(Skinny batons of baguette that will be toasted and made into the best damn breadcrumbs you’ve ever tasted)
Breadcrumbs are sexy.
I knew that would get your attention. (Because no one’s clicking on Breadcrumb Tutorial, right?) But I have the best intentions- promise. Because if there is one single crunchy component that you can add to cooked veggies or pasta that will transform the entire dish, garlicky salty toasted bread bits are it. On a good day- when they’re really golden brown and you’ve upped the ante by using a fancy salt like Fleur de Sel de Guerande– they could stand in for Jon Hamm at the dinner table.
- fresh baguette or 1 demi-baguette, cut into quarters
- Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling + 1 tablespoon
- Kosher or sea salt
- 4 garlic cloves, smashed
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- On a wooden cutting board, cut baguette in half (length-wise) with a serated knife. Next, position the flat, cut side of the baguette facing down on the board and slice length-wise again so that you have four quarters. The baguette quarters should now look like skinny breadsticks. Place on a baking sheet and lightly drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until bread is lightly golden. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
- Cut each breadstick into 4 pieces. In a food processor fitted with the blade attachment, and working in two batches, pulse bread until it looks like coarse pebbles. Some will be big, some will be small- do not fret! Variation makes life interesting! Remove all breadcrumbs to a bowl.
- In a medium-sized skillet over low heat, pour 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add smashed garlic cloves and stir, allowing garlic to perfume the oil. Pour in breadcrumbs and season with several pinches of salt. Toast breadcrumbs until golden brown. Taste and adjust the seasoning, adding more salt as needed. Remove crushed garlic cloves and transfer breadcrumbs to a plate or bowl to cool. (Or, if you're serving over hot pasta or veggies, serve immediately.)
- Breadcrumbs stored in the refrigerator in an air-tight container will last 2-3 weeks.