Making breadcrumbs is so darn easy, you’ll kick yourself when we tell you how to do it. But it’s easy to not know how to make breadcrumbs unless you’ve done it before. So first timers, here’s where we come in.
Breadcrumbs add a tasty crunch to a number of dishes. A pasta bake with a breadcrumb topping is the bomb, breadcrumbed chicken kievs are to die for, and even just sprinkling breadcrumbs over a simple spaghetti dish alla Nigella Lawson will add a fancy-pants twist at a dinner party.
So, let’s get into the nitty gritty of how to actually make them, shall we?
How to make breadcrumbs
First things first, the best bread you can use for breadcrumbs is stale bread - that’s the key here. You can use any type of bread; white bread, wholemeal, brown bread or sourdough, but whichever you choose, it really should be stale.
Take a couple of slices of stale bread and tear them up into 2cm pieces. Pop them in a food processor and pulse until you have breadcrumbs. See? We told you it was simple. If you want really fine, even breadcrumbs, you can also pass them through a sieve after they’ve been in the food processor.
If you don’t have stale bread to hand, a good tip is to toast the bread. Then allow your toast to cool before adding it to your food processor. Toasting the bread will dry it out a tad so you don’t just end up with soft, doughy bread lumps. Plus, it actually gives it a an extra yummy toasty taste.
What’s lovely about breadcrumbs, is you can add in your own flavours to jazz them up a bit. Maybe some dried parmesan? Or lemon zest or fresh herbs like parsley are nice. Plus, garlic salt is never a bad idea when you’re in the market for making breadcrumbs a little jazzier. Or even just a good pinch of sea salt and a crack of black pepper will go down a storm.
How to make panko breadcrumbs
Now, you’ve almost definitely come across panko breadcrumbs in a recipe before. They sound so fancy, right? Well, they’re almost as easy to make as regular breadcrumbs, so why not give them a try next time you’re making chicken katsu curry for your tea.
First up, preheat your oven to 140c (120c fan). Take a few slices of stale white bread and cut the crusts off. Then chuck them into a food processor just like how you would if you were making regular breadcrumbs. Blitz them until very fine, then spread them in an even layer on a baking sheet. Pop them into the oven for around 7 - 10 minute, but chef them halfway through and give them a little stir. Et voila: panko breadcrumbs!
Can you freeze breadcrumbs?
Breadcrumbs will keep in the fridge for up to two months, or you can freeze them for up to six months - that way you always have them to hand.