I was watching Chopped the other night and was inspired by a chef who made croutons for his dish. So, these happened.
I love the liberty that comes with making croutons yourself. You can bake them in as big or small of batches as you feel like at the time. Maybe you have a fresh salad chilling in the fridge or simply need to give the kids something to snack on. With croutons, you can change the flavor so easily by adding tastes like paprika, parmesan, and ranch seasoning, or by using different breads such as pumpernickel or rye. The ideas are so basic, but so yummy. And did I mention that watching Chopped makes me feel like the laziest cook ever?
(Yields 2 cups – Prep time: 5 minutes – Cook time: 30-40 minutes)
6 slices of bread, crusts off and cubed (fresh or day-old)
4 tbs. melted butter (or olive oil)
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. parsley flakes
sea salt, to taste (a pinch or two)
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Put cubed bread into a medium bowl. Combine butter and other ingredients (except salt) in a small dish. Whisk together. Pour over bread cubes and toss until coated. On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, spread bread cubes into a single layer. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt. Bake for 15 minutes. Check for a golden brown color and turn croutons. Bake for 15-20 more minutes or until all sides are crunchy and golden.