This might seem a little counterintuitive because you can buy these. Yes! But, if you're like me, you have a problem with waiting all year for the one chance to buy the bagged ones that were carefully harvested from the Pepperidge Farm. (Sure does take a long time for them to grow theirs!) And most southern Thanksgiving dressing (stuffing) recipes start with this staple.
Anyhoot, these are super easy to make, so there's no need try to remember to purchase the bagged ones while also trying to buy up the last of the green beans and sweet potatoes. There's just too much going on that time of year.
So, start by setting your oven to 200 degrees (this project works nicely on a cool fall day like today because you'll have the oven going for a while). Spread your bread on a single layer on cookie sheets and bake for 1-2 hours, which will bake both sides without turning.
I usually just use whatever bread is left over at the end of the week (meaning I don't usually have copious amounts of bread to do at once). However, whoever said "nobody doesn't like Sara Lee" was wrong! Aidyn Kale Walkush does not like Sara Lee bread, and we had nearly an entire loaf left over at the end of this week in addition to the remnants of another loaf. So, today's batch was quite large.
Remove the bread from the oven and get out your friend the Cuisinart food processor, or Li'l Cuisey, as I like to call him - because naming your kitchen appliances after rappers makes cooking fun! Just ask Sir Mix-A-Lot (the blender) and LG Cool J (the LG fridge).
Break the bread into small pieces and put into the Cuisinart.
Spin it right round like a record baby until it looks like this:
Collect the crumbs in a gallon-sized Ziploc bag.
And now it's time to go Simon and Garfunkel on it. That's right, sing Mrs. Robinson to it, divide it, and have 1/2 of it go solo on Thanksgiving. (Just kidding!)
I mean, of course, that you should invite, parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme to the party. Heck, invite who you want. I was feeling really adventurous today and also invited onion powder, garlic powder, and soul food seasoning. The amount you'll add depends on the amount of bread crumbs you made. I made a lot, so I added about 1 Tbsp of each spice.
Don't worry about the amount of seasoning too much because you can always just use fewer spices (or no spices) in the next batch of bread crumbs to even things out if you find that you used too many on this batch. (Put your next batch right in the same Ziploc bag that this one is in.)
Close the Ziploc bag and shake it, baby, shake it, baby, shake it like that!
Open the bag again after the spices have been distributed so that you can remove any extra air.
Store your fancy pants dried bread crumbs in your freezer.
Note: I'm quite sure that the dried bread crumbs painstakingly harvested from the Pepperidge Farm do not have soul food seasoning in them (meaning that one clear benefit of making your own is that you can season them however you'd like).
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