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Breadcrumbs! Do You Make Your Own?
Making Your Own Breadcrumbs
Did you ever notice that there are a few slices of bread that are no longer fresh but not yet moldy and you don't know what to do with them, or the last piece of Italian bread that got hard?
For years now I have saved those "last pieces" of bread in a pan and just put them in the oven, oven not on. They dry out there and become hard enough to grate. Don't worry if you don't get to them right away, they will last almost forever there. Do not cover them with anything, they really have to dry up. Once they get hard you can grate them with your box grater and then save them in a container and store them in your refrigerator. They will last forever there too. Sometimes you will have a couple of pieces that are large. After they are in the refrigerator they will eventually breakdown and you can squeeze with your fingers and they will break up.
You can grate them in your blender or food processor too, but for me the crumbs are too fine. I like them with more texture. But, that is your call.
By making your own breadcrumbs you not only don't waste leftover bread but you will never have to buy breadcrumbs.
I know it's not a lot of money but, remember that old saying, "a penny saved is a penny earned." And with the price of bread these days, why waste any. I remember when I first got married, 44 1/2 years ago, bread was 3 loaves for a dollar. Now one loaf of bread costs $3. Maybe more if it's specialty bread. So why waste any part of it. And then to buy the breadcrumbs will cost a couple of dollars due to the fact that breadcrumbs are needed in so many dishes you make.
Whether you are just breading and frying meat or using it as a topping in casseroles or macaroni and cheese, not to mention that breadcrumbs are needed as ingredients in your meatballs or meatloaf or tuna/crab patties and what else you can think of. I don't know about you but I have to have a supple of breadcrumbs at all times. If I don't have any in the fridge, I just go to the oven and take out a couple of pieces and grate them real quick.
Sometimes when you are frugal with one thing that gets you in the mood to be frugal with other things too. With the prices of groceries today, anywhere you can save is a plus.
It is also beneficial to grate your own cheese. Many cheeses, even brand names, even thought they taste good, contain fillers. Some of which may cause allergies.
It may take a little work but grating your own cheese, whether it's Parmesan, or Romano, or Pecorino Romano or any other hard cheese really tastes so much better.
Even grating softer cheeses like mozzarella, brick or other cheese you would like to put on your pizza. Other things can be grated also.
Other Uses for a Box Grater
In this instance I grated some carrots. I used them in potato salad, which was a great way to get the family to eat some vegetables. I also grate zucchini for zucchini bread and zucchini patties and casseroles. The flat side of the grater is good for the casseroles. These graters really come in handy.
You save money also on grating foods yourself rather than buying them already grated. I know how it is when you work, I worked also every day, you want to make supper as easy and convenient as possible so you have a tendency to buy foods already prepared. But, saving money is also beneficial so I started grating foods ahead of time on the weekends and saving them in air tight containers for the following week. Worked out really well.