Saturday, August 15, 2015

Oil-Free Croutons

It is frustrating to go into a store and not be able to find whole grain croutons, let alone ones without oil, dairy, or eggs. That's why I cook! So, tonight we are making Caesar Salad with Dreena Burton's "Dreamy" Caesar Dressing (modified to reduce the nuts!), and so my hubby and I devised croutons to go with it. In order to make anything "stick" to the bread cubes, normally oil would be used. We decided to use a different approach, and they came out AMAZING!

1 loaf of whole grain bread, cut into bite-sized cubes
3 T. walnuts
3 T. maple syrup
1 clove of garlic
1/4 t. salt
1/8 t. black pepper

Preheat oven to 300 (convection) or 325 regular.
Place bread cubes in a large bowl with plenty of extra room in it.
Process the walnuts, garlic, salt, and pepper in a food processor until finely chopped. Remove blade and stir in maple syrup by hand. Drizzle mixture over bread cubes, tossing them as you go to coat all pieces.
Move coated bread cubes to silpat or parchment-lined baking sheets, making sure they are in a single layer with plenty of room around them. You may need 2 baking sheets to do this.
Bake for 30 minutes, until bread cubes are light and crispy and very lightly browned.
Store in a gallon-sized freezer bag or sealed container.

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