My marriage was like a day old baguette: Crummy
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November 08, 2015

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So, many nights as a divorced mom I would cook for my son, but I would not want a heavy meal myself. I liked to go Parisian! I would go to my local patisserie (a fancy name for the grocery store) and pick up a small baguette and some lovely cheese. I never ate the whole baguette (Retraction. Sometimes, I did) Usually, the next day I would ditch it.

Then, I had an epiphany.

I could reinvent my semi-stale baguette (or any rustic country bread.) 

Here are a few ideas to re-purpose your uneaten baguette

Croutons

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  • Pull out your cutting board and start surgery. 
  • Slice your baguette’s remains into bite sized pieces. 
  • Toss them in a large mixing bowl. 
  • Generously sprinkle them with Italian seasoning, a bit of garlic powder and a sprinkle of kosher salt and pepper. 
  • Drizzle a generous amount of good olive oil (enough to coat them completely and toss until evenly coated.

Place on a sheet pan and bake at 400 for 10-15 minutes until golden brown.

Store in a ziplock container to keep them fresh.
These are great to freeze, too.


Fresh Bread Crumbs

  

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Ingredients

  • Rustic bread or baguette
  • Good olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  • Break apart about one-quarter of a loaf of rustic bread or a baguette into chunks so that you yield about two cups
  • Add about 3-4 tablespoons of good olive oil 
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1teaspoon of Italian herbs (optional)
  • Pulse in a food processor until crumbs are coarse. 
  • Toast the crumbs in about three tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat- I love using my cast iron skillet.
  • Toss them frequently
  • Once they are crunchy and golden brown, they are finished (about 5 minutes.) 
  • Remove, sprinkle with kosher salt and let them cool on a parchment paper or a paper towel.
  • Store in an airtight container in the fridge and use within two days or freeze up to two months.
  • Makes about 1 cup

Parmesan Crostini

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For the crostini
One small baguette (stale works!) thinly sliced (1/4 “)
Olive Oil
Grated Parmesan Cheese
Salt
Pepper

Directions
Heat oven to 425. Brush each side of the crostini with olive oil. Put a layer of the slices down and cook for 2-3 minutes (until golden brown)
Remove from the oven and flip over
Sprinkle the alternate side with grated parmesan cheese, a bit of salt and fresh ground pepper. Pop back into the oven and cook another 2-3 minutes.

Top with Hummus, a slice of cheddar and a bit of fig jam or solo.


French Toast

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Several day old French or Italian loaf bread is ideal for this popular and delicious breakfast. Because the bread has had a chance to firm up the slices, hold up better when dredged in the milk and egg mixture and then fry them.
Save your bread until the weekend for a special breakfast for you and your kiddos- they will be all smiles.

Ingredients

  • 4 eggs
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • Two and a half teaspoons of cinnamon
  • Six to eight thick slices of bread, which is at least two-days-old 
  • Butter 
  • Maple syrup

(Optional)
Fresh strawberries or blueberries
Powdered sugar
Brown sugar and raisins

Directions

  • With a wire whisk, mix well the eggs, milk, and cinnamon. 
  • Transfer the mixture into a shallow bowl, wide enough to place a slice of the bread you will be using.
  • Melt some butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Put each slice of bread into the egg milk mixture giving enough time for the bread to soak in the mixture. 
  • Allow the excess to drip off.
  • Place the bread slices onto the hot, buttered skillet.
  • Cook it until it has a nice, even browned crust on one side and then flip it over and repeat
  • Serve it hot with butter, maple syrup, fresh berries and a shake or two of powdered sugar

 

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