Don't Throw Out That Old Bread...
When your bread has passed the expiration date you don't have to throw it out. Now it goes without saying if it has molded, you should. :)
But if you like to save money as much as I do, and your bread has just gone stale, you can make homemade croutons with it. And actually stale bread works better. These are so much tastier than store bought.
This wasn't the post I had planned for today, but my loaf of bread was dated "use by Jan. 2", and I am planning on fixing big salads with the works tonight for dinner. So this post today just seemed appropriate!
2 cups - 1 1/2 inch cubes French or Italian bread ( I used more than this, but had to make 2 batches).
2 Tablespoons oil (I prefer extra virgin olive oil for these)
1 Tablespoon butter
2 large cloves garlic, minced (I buy minced garlic in the jar and that way I always have garlic on-hand)
1 tsp. your choice of dried seasoning - I prefer Parmesan cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste
Cut bread into cubes and place in a bowl. In a large skillet heat oil, butter and garlic over low-med. heat. Then add bread cubes and continuously toss to coat. This will take a few minutes. Add more oil if necessary.
Once the bread is good and coated, line a cookie sheet with foil. Use a cookie sheet with sides. This is the point where I sprinkle Parmesan cheese over the bread.
Bake in a pre-heated 375-degree oven for approximately 10 minutes or so. Take the croutons out once or twice during the baking time and stir them.
Store in an air-tight container or zip-lock bag for up to a week.
Hope your new year is off to a great start!