Saturday, April 17, 2010

Recipe: Cast Iron Croutons

Cast iron croutons made with whole garlic cloves and olive oil

Cast iron croutons are really simple, and are light-years beyond anything you can buy in a box (especially in the gluten free world). You can of course make this recipe with regular wheat bread, and it'll be even more tasty.

The key to this recipe is the cast iron skillet, which provides even heat and a non-stick surface. This makes it possible to create croutons that are crunchy on the outside, but still slightly soft in the middle. Another important factor in this recipe is cooling your croutons on an un-covered plate, which allows moisture to escape.

Croutons are simple: bread, garlic, oil, salt, and pepper
While you can use any gluten free bread for this recipe, if you use Udi's Gluten Free sandwich bread, you'll thank yourself. Unlike most gluten free sandwich bread (which tends to resemble over-dry cardboard-filled fruitcake), Udi's would probably fool most wheat-eaters in a sandwich, and fools nearly everyone as croutons.

Ingredients
  • 2 slices of sandwich bread
  • 3 peeled garlic cloves
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
Procedure
Heat a medium cast iron skillet on medium heat for 5-7 minutes to warm it up.  While the skillet is warming, cut sandwich bread into crouton-sized pieces.  When the skillet is warm, add enough oil to coat the pan well (it will absorb into the bread, which helps develop the crustiness).  You may need to add more oil if too much gets absorbed.  Toss in the whole (peeled) garlic cloves, and then sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper.

Cook the croutons while turning them over every 2 minutes or so to avoid burning.  Taste a few croutons as you're going along and adjust seasoning as necessary.  When both sides are nice and brown, pull the croutons out of the skillet and let them rest for 5 minutes on a dry paper towel.

Toss croutons on your caesar salad, and eat!

Feel free to add other ingredients like oregano, onion, Parmesan cheese, etc. to take the flavor in a new direction.

2 comments:

  1. wow. these were alot better than anything I can buy in a box. thank you. Marsha.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Marsha,

    Glad you found these croutons delicious! Thanks for your comment.

    -Derek

    ReplyDelete

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