Monday, May 20, 2013

Make Your Own Breadcrumbs. It's Easy!

Breadcrumbs. For something so simple, they sure have a long ingredient list, and can get pretty expensive. So I make my own. You can too. I'm a semi-homemade kind of girl, so I promise this will be simple. All you really need is bread!

Breadcrumbs have a bunch of uses. I use them to bread chicken, other meats and veggies, as a part of meatballs, and to add a crispy topping to casseroles. Alright, let's get down to business.  

Like I said, you really just need bread. You can use fresh bread, stale (not moldy) bread, day old french bread that is hard as a rock, whatever.
This is my favorite bread. It has a short ingredient list, it's cheap, and delicious. 

Great Grains makes other whole wheat bakery-style
breads that are equally as delicious.

Step 1. Cut your bread into small cubes or strips. Nothing fancy. The smaller they are, the less time they'll need in the oven. Spread them into a singe layer on a baking sheet.  

That's one layer. Mostly.

Step 2. Place in an oven heated to 250 degrees F to dry it out. It will take anywhere from 30 min to an hour depending on how small your slices are and the freshness of the bread. These took 45 minutes. You can't dry them out too much, so don't worry if you leave the bread in longer than necessary. 
To test if they're done, break one of the largest pieces in half. If the center is dry, it's done. If there's even the slightest bit of moisture left, leave the pan in longer.

Step 3. Make the crumbs. 
There are three ways to do this. 

  1. Place the pieces into a food processor or high powered blender and pulse until they become crumbs. 
  2. If you don't have one of those, you can grate the pieces with a cheese grater. 
  3. If that seems too time consuming, place the pieces in a zioploc bag and beat with a rolling pin.

I used a Ninja blender. I love this thing. It does everything a food processor
can do at a fraction of the cost. (and cupboard space)
Store in an airtight container.  

I love re-using containers, so I keep mine in an
old breadcrumb canister.

Finished! Now go make some tasty meatballs or mozzarella sticks