Tasty and mostly simple food for the whole family.

Tasty, healthy, simple, verstile, practical, seasonal, fun food for all to enjoy. I will endeavour to make things gluten-free, dairy-free (cow's milk only here, I'm not super-human), and low sugar as able. I hope others feel motivated to add their recipes to this collection so we can all try them. Thank you!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Croutons & Bread Crumbs (Gluten-Free.... or not)

I have been making various things lately that I have wanted breadcrumbs or croutons in the gluten-free variety.  I haven't seen any in the store, but they are so darn easy to make, that I had to get on it.  I typically make croutons out of all left-over bread or bread-like items in the house.  If I don't, I will just end up tossing it into the compost and I hate throwing food away (see 'hot dog croutons' below).  If I just turn it into croutons, Mike and Mia will take down the whole batch in an afternoon for snacks like they are potato chips.  This is a triple bonus for me of using food before it spoils, often getting good hearty grains into the family's bellies and having just what I need around in a pinch.  The same now goes for Gluten-free breads. 

There are lots of ways to make croutons and breadcrumbs, so be creative with what you add in.  I am just offering some thoughts of quick & easy.  Store leftovers (hah!) in very air-tight container.

Note:  Use whatever bread you want or have here.  If I want Gluten-Free, I use either Udi's Brown Rice Bread or Great Harvest's French because it is what I buy.  If I don't care, I use whatever is around and it is typically hot dog buns or bagels or something left over from a gathering of some kind.  It is all delicious with oil,  herbs and salt!


For Croutons:
Preaheat oven to ~400.

-Cut bread into about 1/2 inch cubes (however much you are using)
-Toss bread into medium bowl
-Drizzle around some olive oil over the bread (maybe several tablespoons?).  I don't use a lot in an effort to minimize excess fat, but fat is flavor, afterall.
-Sprinkle in some spices.... I often use a combination of  lemon pepper, basil, garlic powder, salt, pepper and red chili flakes. 
-Toss everything together in the bowl, then pour onto ungreased cookie sheet
-Cook for ~12 minutes, stirring once or twice to cook evenly on all sides
-Let cool before using

Plain Jane here, no fancy stuff.

Once croutons are cooled, place in food processor or blender and pulse for a few seconds until you get the texture you want.  If you are making breadcrumbs only, you may want to leave out the spices when you toast them.

Gluten Free.  Coarse texture good for salads and pastas.

Gluten-Free.  Fine texture for breading.
No, really.  Hot dog buns make great croutons!  Dont judge.

 Also.... a few weeks back, this was posted on Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef.  Slightly different technique, but the point is it is easy and they are so great to have on hand!