We always have heels of bread left over and nobody ever seems to want them. Occasionally, I will eat a peanut butter sandwich on them but usually they just sit, all alone, helpless there in the little bread buddy. Do you have a bread buddy? I highly recommend them. The bread takes up fewer footprints in your pantry and the bread stays fresher.
And besides being frugal (that's a nice word for cheap) I tend to be a bit lazy. I got a whole lotta' quit in me. So, if it ain’t easy and/or able to be done neatly and tidily...well, forget it. So, in comes one of my favorite kitchen utensils...
Kitchen shears...or simply put scissors. I have about 10 pair in my kitchen that I strategically place in all different drawers just so I can grab them wherever I am standing and not have to expend extra steps to go to a particular drawer for them. (See? Lazy. I'd like to blame it on officially learned Industrial Engineering concepts - something to the order of analysis of increased optimal workflow processes - but in all honesty it's just lazy.) I know, I know...I'm getting to the bread issue at hand. Cut open your bread bag so you create a nice little disposable "placemat" on which to work. Use the shears and cut up your bread into bite-sized pieces.
Next we're on to another one of my favorite little gadgets in the kitchen. It is my oil dispenser. I found this on clearance at Harris Teeter. Isn't it like a little work of art? Ok...I'm stretching that a little bit but it IS nice don't you agree?
And voila'! You have homemade croutons ready to be baked at a moment's notice. I store them in my freezer. Pour out a few onto foil lined baking sheet (because what lazy person wants to wash a pan?) and bake them for 6-8 min (or more or less to your liking) at about 400-425. I've even been known to hit toast on my toaster/convection oven if I was in a real hurry.
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