3.03.2009

TIghtwad Tuesday: Breadcrumbs

Lately I've been working on being more frugal. I have to admit now that I'm at home full time it's actually easier - when I was working I was all about saving time, which doesn't always translate into saving money.
But one thing I've always done is make my own breadcrumbs - and I don't use 'new' bread. Every time I get to the end of a loaf of bread, I'm usually left with two heels. I'm sure they taste fine but no one 'round here will eat them. I have a dedicated bag in my freezer to bread rejects. The heels go in the bag, also any bread product - hamburger buns, bagels, English muffins - that are just little too stale but still edible.
When the bag fills up, it's breadcrumb time!
Bring out the bag and let the bread thaw. Heat the oven to 200F. Pull out a bunch of cookie sheets or jellyroll pans - enough that you can dry out all your bread at once.
Tear apart all your bread products - by the way, it's fine to mix wheat, white, multi grain, pumpernickel, whatever - and lay them in a single layer on the cookie sheets. Place the bread in the oven for about an hour, more or less, until the bread is dried out. A good way to check is squishing some in your hand - if it crumbles and breaks, you're good. If it squashes into a ball, it needs more time.
Once the bread is dried, you have two options - you can crunch the bread up into crumbs by placing the bread in a big Ziploc bag and running it over with a rolling pin or beating it with a mallet. Both are equally satisfying, but leave you with uneven crumbs.
The second option is running the bread through your food processor. This will leave you with nice little uniform crumbs.
You can add dried herbs to spice it up a bit (if that's your thing), and store in the freezer. The crumbs will keep for quite a long time in an airtight container or freezer bag.
Head on over to Being Frugal for more tightwad tips!

3 comments:

Vrieling Mom said...

I masteraling hte Tightwad Tuesday thing..I love it!! You are so inspiring..taking the good with the bad!!

Vrieling Mom said...

what the hell was that word!?! "I am stealing the"

megant599 said...

I have actually been wondering how to make breadcrumbs. Fresh bread in cuisinart doesn't work. THanks for the tip...tightwad!!!