So I have an unfortunate habit of buying baguettes and not eating all of them fast enough before they get stale and un-chewable. Fresh bread is worth it. No regrets – and here’s why:
Garlic Bread – perfect for a loaf that a little stale and crunchy – the oils soften it up for normal chewing and tastiness
Mix freshly minced garlic (2-4 cloves) in olive oil and/or melted butter with italian seasoning (rosemary, basil, oregano, onion powder, etc) and red pepper flakes, and shredded parmesan cheese. The mixture should be clumpy more than runny but the proportions are extremely flexible. Slice the baguette either hasselback (across the length every half inch) or lengthwise, then place on a sheet of foil big enough to wrap the entire loaf. Stuff the open edges with the garlicky cheesy oil mixture – its ok if it gets all over the bread thats why the foil! Wrap all of the loaf and throw in the oven for 10 min or as long as your meal is cooking at roughly 350 but basically any temperature is fine. The longer it bakes the better but it also will basically never burn just get more melty (we left it in at a friendgiving for almost an hour as it got hidden behind a casserole – no problem). Watch for steam when opening the foil – slice and enjoy!
Croutons – if you don’t feel like garlic bread or the bread is too far gone
Based on this recipe
Cut up the bread into bite-sized chunks, marinate in olive oil and italian seasonings and garlic – she calls for longer than I’ve really let it marinate – I usually just toss it in a tupperware with a lid and let it sit until the oven preheats. Bake at 350 for 10-15 minutes – they do get a bit crispier after you take them out FYI. Toss into a salad or keep for up to a week? That’s the longest mine have lasted – a good incentive to make a salad.