I got the idea to make croutons while watching the Food Network channel the other day. I didn't write down the instructions, but it looked so easy I had to try it! The results? Delicious.
What you need:
- A loaf (or partial loaf) of crusty bread - something hearty, not too soft, that will hold up to being chopped up into squares. I used Trader Joe's whole wheat sourdough bread. You can also use an unsliced loaf, or a loaf of bread that is on the verge of "turning."
- Olive oil
- Pepper (freshly cracked is best)
- Italian seasoning (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Slice your bread into 1/2 inch slices (if not already sliced). Remove crusts from bread, if desired, and cut the remaining bread into 1/2 to 3/4 inch squares.
- Arrange the bread cubes on a shallow baking sheet, somewhat evenly distributed.
- Drizzle bread cubes generously with olive oil (at least a few Tablespoons).
- Toss bread cubes by hand to coat with oil. Arrange bread cubes evenly across baking sheet.
- Sprinkle bread cubes lightly with salt, then pepper and Italian seasoning. Use enough spices so that you can see the pepper and seasoning on all of the bread.
- Place pan into preheated oven. Check after 8 minutes, and toss with a spatula. Continue to bake in 3 minute increments until desired "crunchiness" is attained. Mine took approximately 14 minutes.
- Store in a jar or sealed plastic bag. Use on salads or other recipes.