Food & Diet

4 Delicious Meals You Can Make From Stale Bread 

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Bread is a staple in most countries in the world so it is quite safe to assume that there’s leftover bread almost everywhere in the world too! Below are 4 delicious meals you can make to give new life to day (or two) old bread.

1. Roasted Pepper Panzanella

A panzenella is a Tuscan salad made with stale bread, tomatoes and other veggies in season.

Here’s what you need:

  • 4 large orange or red bell peppers
  • 8 tbsps. olive oil (divided)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsps. red wine vinegar
  • ¼ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 tbsps. oregano
  • ½ country-style bread torn into pieces (day old bread is preferred)
  • 1 ounce of spicy salumi (any Italian cold cuts made of pork)
  • 4 ounces mozzarella (preferably buffalo)

Roast the peppers by putting them under a pre-heated broiler for 10-12 minutes. Once charred and blistered, take them out, steam in a brown paper bag, peel the skins off and slice. Toss peppers in a large bowl with vinegar, onion, garlic, red pepper flakes, oregano and 4 tbsps. of olive oil.

Toss the bread in 2 tbsps. of olive oil, properly coating all sides. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Bake or throw under a broiler for 8 minutes or until the slices are dry and tough on the outside but not burnt.

Mix all the ingredients with the croutons and spicy salumi, and then serve.

Source: Adapted from Bonappetit.com

2. Ribollita

The ribollita is another Tuscan recipe that makes use of old bread to thicken a vegetable soup that is made of beans, greens and other vegetables.

Here’s what you need:

  • 4 slices of bacon (cut into 1/4 inch pieces)
  • 1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion (1/2 inch dices)
  • 2 medium carrots (cut into ½ inch dices)
  • 2 cloves of garlic (finely chopped)
  • 1 large baking potato (peeled and cut into ½ inch dices)
  • 5 ounce of diced tomatoes
  • 2 stalks of celery (cut into small dices)
  • ¾ cup dry red wine
  • 4 cups low sodium beef broth
  • 1 can cannellini beans (15oz.)
  • 2 bunches of Swiss chard (stemmed and roughly chopped)
  • 3 tsps. kosher salt
  • ¼ tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 10 slices of stale bread, torn into chunks
  • 6 tsps. Pesto (optional)

In a Dutch oven or soup pot, cook the bacon over medium heat. Add more oil and then sweat the onions. Add celery, carrots, garlic and then add potatoes last. Add the tomatoes, wine and broth. Add the beans, 2 cups of water and Swiss chard. Cover and bring to a boil. Once it has boiled, stir, turn the heat down and simmer for 45 minutes. Season to taste and then remove from heat. If you want to you can add pesto, too.

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Source: Adapted from realsimple.com

3. Cheese, Onion and Bread Soufflé

Turn your stale bread into something fancy with this soufflé recipe.

Here’s what you need:

  • 2 tbsps. butter
  • 10 slices of sourdough or stale soft white bread (remove the crusts and tear into small chunks)
  • 2 cups hot milk
  • 1 small onion (cut into ¼ inch rounds)
  • 4 eggs (separated)
  • Grated Swiss cheese (7oz.)
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • ¼ tsp. black pepper
  • 1 pinch ground nutmeg
  • 1 pinch ground cayenne pepper

Preheat your oven to 400°F (204.4°C).

Butter a 2 ½-quart soufflé/baking dish.

Place bread in a bowl and pour milk over it. Set aside to allow the bread to completely absorb the milk. In a skillet, add some butter and sauté the onions until soft. The milk should be absorbed by now. Mash the bread with a spoon or use your hands. Add the onions and stir.

In a separate bowl, add cheese, egg yolks, salt, pepper, nutmeg and cayenne pepper. Pour this mixture on the bread and stir until well combined.

In another bowl, whisk the egg whites until you see stiff peaks forming and then fold the egg whites into the bread mixture.

Transfer to soufflé dish and bake for 45-50 minutes.

Source: Adapted from Realsimple.com

4. Biscocho

The biscocho is a Filipino snack or dessert made with old toasted bread, dunked in butter and sugar.

Here’s what you need:

  • Slices of leftover bread (hotdog rolls would do great too)
  • Butter
  • Sugar

For buns – slice in half to reveal the soft center. For sliced bread you can leave it as it is, or cut the slices lengthwise to make strips.

Spread a THIN layer of butter or margarine on all sides. Emphasis on “thin” because a thick layer of butter will only make the Biscocho soggy. Sprinkle a generous amount of table sugar or brown sugar on top.

Bake on low heat (250°F or 121°C) to dehydrate the bread and give the sugar time to caramelize without burning the bread or the sugar. Bake for an hour.

Source: Adapted from Asianinamericamag.com & lutongpinas.com

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