I want to make homemade breadcrumbs. I plan to add seasonings(garlic, oregano, parsley, basil) and am wondering if I should toast the bread before I process it with the seasonings.
Is it better to just make the crumbs out of untoasted bread, or is the crumb more flavorful it the bread is lightly toasted? I'm tending toward toasting, but wonder if that's the way I should go?
Fresh breadcrumbs use untoasted bread (best for adding to meatloaf, meatballs, etc.)
If I have leftover bread, it is usually dry enough (day old baguette!). Otherwise, I wouldn't toast it, but dry it in a mild oven (200F); you don't want it to burn.
I have also cheated with my cast iron pan--heat the pan, toss in some broken pieces of bread, and stir with a wooden spoon until it's completely dry.
If breadcrumbs will be used as a coating or atop a casserole, there's little need for toasting, as the oven or frying pan will get the necessary toasted/browned flavour.
I like to grind mine in the food processor with some seasoning, garlic and then add to a pan and lightly toast. Just dry. Then add either butter or olive oil when you add them to your dish. But there are many different ways too, it depends if you want to make alot to store or to just use for a specific dish.
That is mine way of doing it.
I agree with you that it depends on whether you're storing or using for a particular dish. I generally take stale sourdough, coarsely grind in the FP, put in a zipping bag and freeze. No seasonings and no toasting. Then I can pull out what I need and use however I want. I also don't remove the crusts. Agree there are several way of approaching this.
re: c oliver
Yep, totally on that co. I is so open to what you are using them for. I tend to go plain but sometimes make some generic seasoned. But now a days we use them for so much and all different flavors. Hard to narrow it down isn't it?
I usually make mine general seasoning and if I need fresh I make them that day. Guilty I do keep a can of plain and seasoned bread crumbs in the pantry in case I run out. Back up!!. I use them sometimes when I only need a teaspoon or two. Come in hand when I don't have homemade.