Friday, January 21, 2011
Parmesan Garlic and Herb Croutons
I make light caesar salads as a side dish often. Very often. I don't do anything fancy- just romaine, some parmesan, and a high quality light caesar dressing. Oh- and croutons. Yes- croutons are a must. Only I recently ran out of croutons and kept forgetting to buy them, so we went weeks with coutonless salads- a real cryin' shame.
I realized that enough was enough and it was time to make some croutons. There's really nothing easier in the world- so why not, right? I didn't follow a recipe- I just chopped, tossed, baked, and then ate. Yum- eating these was the best part!
These croutons came out fabulous. I was pleased with how nicely they turned out. And best of all they are much healthier than store bought ones because I used multigrain bread, less oil, and baked them instead of frying. I will never buy store made croutons again. Oh, and by the way- if you choose to snack on these instead of putting them in a salad, I won't judge you. I promise.
Source: Stephanie Cooks Original
1/2 loaf good quality Italian bread, multigrain preferred
3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper
1- Preheat the oven to 350.
2- Line a cookie sheet with a silpat or parchment paper.
3- Taking the bread, slice it in half horizontally. Then slice each piece in half vertically, so you have four long, thin slices of bread.
4- Cut the four bread pieces into even cubes, placing into a large mixing bowl- set aside.
5- In a small bowl combine the EVOO, garlic powder, Italian seasonings, and a dash of salt an pepper. Stir well.
6- Slowly drizzle the mixture over the bread cubes, stirring well. Continue pouring until all of the mixture is on the bread. (The bread cubes should be saturated in places, but they do not need to be completely covered in the mixture).
7- Toss in the parmesan cheese, stir well.
8- Spread the bread cubes out in a single layer on the sheet. Bake 15 minutes, remove from the oven, and stir well.
9- Bake another 15 minutes. Again, remove from the oven and stir well. At this point if they are hard and crisp, leave them out to cool. If not return to the oven for 10 minutes or so.
10- Allow the croutons to cool completely before storing in an airtight container.