Monday, February 17, 2014

So Your Bread Didn't Quite Turn Out.

So your bread didn't quite turn out. Now what? Not all is lost unless you've burned the whole thing to a crisp. If the inside is still okay then cut the crust off and proceed. If the texture is a wash then proceed. If the middle is doughy then cook it longer if you catch it in time. If by cooking it longer the crust becomes too thick and hard then you need a different pan. Contact me because have I got the best place to order bread pans. They are awesome!!! Narrow and tall and thick, built to last generations and cook bread up like a dream with a nice golden light crust.
Last week I had our one year old with foot and mouth disease and our five year old at the beginning of the week had the flu but they were here all week. Needless to say things did not get done. That will make this week a doozy for on the next week we close on the new house.
Lets say I lost track of time while dealing with munchkins and I caught a cold from exhaustion and that is the reason I forgot about the bread in the oven. It is the truth but then again I do own a kitchen timer. I just don't know how long bread takes to cook. Till done is what I always say. The crust was brown and REAL crunchy. I started up a new batch and set to work salvaging the two loaves I'd ruined. Not completely though because with a waste not want not attitude there is almost always something that can be done with the oops. If nothing else I could of cut it up and given it to the chickens.
This particular two loaves were artisan bread, unfortunately one was suppose to go to the neighbors but that will have to be another time. When I had a few moments to myself, I sawed the bread into slices. No I'm not exaggerating. My hand hurt from trying to slice through the crust. I then cut off the crustiest of the crust placing it in the chickens bucket. The rest I cubed and set aside. As I was cutting the cubes, I heated my large cast iron skillet on the stove melting butter. I used a quarter cup at a time. To this I added a pinch or two of  garlic salt, oregano, basil, and parsley. Then I tossed the bread crumbs in to coat and placed them in the food dehydrator. Only because it was already running with apple slices nearly done. Otherwise they would have gone into the oven. Actually they would have gone there anyway if the weather had been really cold because it helps heat the house but we are getting a break for which I'm very grateful
 I'm praying for the ground to thaw so we can pound posts at the new place and put up corrals. The sooner this is done the sooner the stock and I can move there. Four months living over half the months apart and the scramble to make meals and do laundry each time my husband is home for a couple days is wearing big time on me and him. Kirk is my balancing force with my Autism. My asthma, which has barely ever been a problem, is really giving me fits this year. Two doctors think the move will probably end my troubles in that department. I am extremely allergic to polluted air. In a city I will have pneumonia within twenty-four hours of arrival because of it. Here it is the mines that are causing my problem.    
But wait a minute, I've gotten off track there. When using the oven you set it on a low temperature like 250 F and turn the bread cubes occasionally as they toast and dry. I figured my cubes were toasted enough already just with over baking but the oven probably wouldn't have hurt them.
Your home made bread crumbs will be better than any you can buy at the store. You can use whatever spices you want customizing them. Take a peek in the grocery isle at the commercial ones to get ideas on what spices are commonly used to get a good idea where to start. Croutons are really yummy thrown in the blender and crushed. You can use these crumbs to bread your chicken for an extra tasty dish. I often use bread I'm not happy with or just the ends of loaves and dry the slices on the counter top since our air is very dry in Wyoming. These slices I put in the blender and place them in a jug in the cupboard. With these crumbs I mix in some flour and spices when making chicken fried steak, or parmesan elk meat or a myriad of other dishes.

Last but not least you can simply dry bread crumbs and save them for stuffing. The croutons are yummy for this also. I've not made stuffing in forever since I let all my plants die. They need a grow lamp in the middle of the winter in this house because of the angle of the roof which does not allow adequate sunshine in. I do love stuffing with a mixture of fresh and dried sage. One of the first things I will do in the new house will be to start herbs and plants for the garden this summer. I love fresh herbs for cooking. We close next week and can begin. I wonder if I will be able to see the northern lights from the huge window in my bedroom that looks out on the mountain. Or are the northern lights only seen while camping on the mountain. I wonder. We don't get them down here on the plains.

Don't throw bread that doesn't make the mark or is you don't like the crusts. Recycle it into something wonderful.

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