The Everyday KitchenFood advice for a busy life
Growing up in the UK as I did, bread was for making into toast, sandwiches, bread and butter pudding or stuffing the Sunday roast. I had no idea of the myriad of different ways bread, and particularly stale bread, is used around the world.
1. In a frittata
I recently spotted this delicious "complete meal" frittata, where leftover chunks of bread are sauteed in olive oil and then added to a vegetable rich frittata. It's a lovely idea.
2. Gratin topping
I frequently turn leftover bits of stale bread into breadcrumbs, using my hand held blender. To these I add dried herbs, pieces of preserved lemon, leftover bits of parmesan, or just a drizzle of olive oil - whatever I have. I then store these pre-flavoured breadcrumbs in the freezer, for when I'm not next making a gratin or vegetable bake.
3. Made into pangritata
These pre-flavoured breadcrumbs can also be fried in a bit of olive oil and turned into a crunchy and delicious pangritata, for scattering over pasta and risottos.
4. Used in a salad
Leftover bread is used as a salad ingredient in a number of cultures. These pieces of bread absorb the flavours of the ingredients and dressing and are quite delicious. Examples are the tomato heavy panzanella, fattoush and my favourite, fattet, a Middle Eastern salad with chickpeas and yoghurt.
5. As a soup thickener
Adding chunks of bread is a delicious way of thickening up a soup. In Italy pieces of bread are added to a tomato based soup called Pappa Al Pomodoro. It's also used in ribollita and I've often made variations on this Jamie Oliver soup, where the bread is rubbed with garlic and then baked with cabbage, greens, rosemary and fontina cheese. It's quite delicious.
Beyond toast and sandwiches, how do you use bread?
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