How to Waste Less Bread

Roughly 1/3 of a loaf of bread is crust so cutting off the crusts can become a costly habit. Those unwanted crusts along with other not so fresh bread can be used in all sorts of ways – from adding scrunch and crunch to a topping through to providing body and substance in an inexpensive pasta or salad dish.

Bread is the single most wasted food in New Zealand. 

How to make and use bread crumbs:
Place stale bread or crusts in a processor or blender and pulse to form crumbs or grate on the coarse side of a box grater. Fresh bread crumbs freeze well, so keep a stash in the freezer

  • Use fresh breadcrumbs in meatballs and meat loaves to bind the mixture,
  • Sprinkle on Cauliflower cheese, macaroni cheese or other gratineed dishes for a little scrunch
  • Use to coat patties, fish fillets, and home made nuggets etc before frying

What to do with stale bread slices:
Sliced bread can be used instead of pastry for small savouries, ideal with simple fillings like quiche or smoked fish. Trim off the crusts and roll the slices with a rolling pin to compress them. Butter lightly and place butter side out into metal patty pans or muffin trays– they can be baked ahead and stored in an airtight container to be filled later or filled prior to baking

Use thick slices of slightly stale bread to make M and C bee’s- these crunchy marmite and cheese snacks a classic “kiwi” kids favourite – spread  the bread lightly with marmite, add a sprinkle of grated cheese and bake in a low oven till very dry and crunchy. Store in an airtight container and use in the kids lunchboxes or for after school snacks.

Food waste is the 3rd biggest producer of greenhouse gasses after China and the USA.

Any bread can be made into a sweet or savoury bread and butter pudding. Savoury herb or cheese breads make savoury meals ideal for a brunch or lunch, with eggs, milk, seasonings and a little sausage, bacon or ham. Plain or fruit breads make wonderful winter desserts, add a little cream to the eggy mixture and some spices, chocolate chips or dried or canned fruits.

Leftover Ciabatta or baguette can be made into croutons: 
Simply cube the bread, toss with a little garlicky oil and bake until pale golden and quite dried out. Store in an airtight container. Serve scattered into salads or on top of soup or cut into discs, oil lightly and bake until light golden and dry. Use instead of crackers with dips, spreads, deli toppings or as a low fat snack




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