What to do with the Crusts

According to my toddler, the greatest offense in the world is a sandwich with the crusts left on. At first, I bargained with him. Then begged. The crusts are good for you, I said. You liked crusts just yesterday. But as with most battles of the will, my toddler won out. Eating is enough of a challenge right now. So I took off the crust.

The problem is, now I have a lot of crusts in my life going unused. My husband and I seldom eat bread, so for the last few months I've been tossing the crusts into the trash and mourning the waste. What can I do with unwanted pieces of bread? With that awful heel?

Then it hit me.

Everyone loves croutons. It's one of the few exceptions to the bread ban in my house. We love that little crunch on the salad. Mass 'em up and use them as bread crumbs. I only buy them when I'm really hungry while grocery shopping. They're a treat. But with an abundance of crust, we have the perfect vehicle for croutons.

To make them, I save up the crusts for a few sandwiches. I usually wait until I have about six sandwiches worth. Then it's go time.

  • Preheat the oven to 350
  • Shred the crusts into crouton sized pieces in a metal pan. I've done it in glass and ceramic, but it doesn't get quite as crunchy. 
  • it should look something like this
  • Add about two tablespoons of your favorite oil. I usually do olive, since I flavor mine Italian. Butter, coconut oil, and lard all well!
  • Season. I do a few shakes each of seasoning salt, pepper, garlic, and onion. Then I toss about two teaspoons of Italian herbs. If you have fresh ones, that's even better.
  • Toss. Make sure they're evenly oiled and seasoned.
  • yummm
  • Put them in the oven for 10-15 minutes, or until they're all crispy and golden brown.
  • Let them cool, and that's it! 
Crusts turned into a tasty addition to any salad or meat loaf. And if you can believe it, my toddler loves them. Of course.

What do you do with those pesky crusts?

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