You probably had baguettes on many occasions and not realized what type of bread it was. Baguettes are a popular type of french bread that’s crusty on the outside and soft on the inside. Baguettes are typically long and skinny, though they come in many different sizes are used for all types of culinary dishes. If you’ve been planning a party, special event, or just looking for new ideas for serving up some great foods with baguettes, here are five things you can make with a baguette that will make your dinner party the talk of the town.
Bread and Parmesan
One of the most popular but also basic things you can make with a baguette is a fresh-cut baguette with honey and fresh-cut parmesan. Seemingly basic, it has a complicated flavor profile that combines the sweetness of honey with the sharp flavor in fresh parmesan. The more honey you add, the sweeter it is so it’s typical to allow the person who is eating it, to add as much cheese and as much honey as they prefer. This makes it a dish that is really easy to include at parties with the only thing you have to prepare is slicing the bread and thin slices of parmesan.
Breadcrumbs are a food product that’s often overlooked on shopping lists unless it is something you specifically plan to use right away. You can turn your excess and older baguettes into great-tasting breadcrumbs to store in your freezer for later use. Cut the baguettes into small chunks, toast in the oven at 370 degrees until dry, cool, and place into a food processor. You can store the breadcrumbs in your freezer for up to three months. These are perfect for any pasta dish you may have that just needs a little bit of crunch. They can also be added to different desserts for texture since baguettes don’t have a lot of inherent flavors.
Make a quick snack for yourself and guests by cutting the baguettes lengthways, top them with your favorite cheese, and toast them in the oven until crispy and golden brown. If you want to make it into a complete dish with additional flavor, you can even add lunch meat such as ham slices to the top of the cheese before placing it in the oven. Not only does it add to the nutritional value (ham is nutritious, right?…), it also adds a saltiness that is often a welcomed flavor to bread and cheese. The combination makes for a perfect main dish for any party that has a lot of people in attendance.
Nothing makes a salad stand out more than a great crouton, but boxed croutons are not always fresh or readily at hand. You can repurpose your old baguettes into great tasting and flavorful croutons in only a few minutes. Start by cutting a french baguette loaf into 1-inch cubes and drizzle with olive oil, herbs, salt, and other seasonings. Once seasoned, place them on a baking tray and bake at 350 degrees until golden brown and crispy. The fresh taste of these baguette croutons will probably ruin store-bought boxes of croutons in the future, however, so be careful with this one.
Baguettes can also be used to make desserts. You can make a delicious bread pudding simply by adding eggs, sugar, salt, butter, and vanilla extract. Typically the bread pudding needs to soak in the egg-milk mixture for about an hour to get the best consistency. Depending on your preference, you may even want to add additional eggs for a more spongy texture. Look on the internet or search your favorite cookbook to find bread pudding recipes. If you like a specific flavor such as apple or peach, then a recipe for apple bread pudding or peach bread pudding can be an even better option for you. That is one of the great things about bread pudding, is that it can be added to and altered to hit whatever sweetness you are in the mood for.
Bruschetta is a great appetizer or compliment to any Italian meal that you can easily make using baguettes. Cut the baguette into thick slices and drizzle with olive oil, parmesan cheese, herbs, and roasted tomatoes. Bake at 350 degrees until the cheese is melted and the bread is crispy. Bruschetta is often served with a marinara dipping sauce. A great thing about this recipe is that it can serve a lot of people with just one loaf of bread. This makes it ideal for parties or when you want to just add a “cherry on top” of your favorite dish.
This list wouldn’t be complete without garlic bread. Garlic bread can be as simple as cutting the bread lengthwise topped with softened butter, garlic, salt, and parsley. This alone makes for a very tasty side dish. However, you can add things like parmesan or your favorite type of cheese to add a little bit more to the dish and make it more filling. This is a great option if you are trying to cook for a large group of people or if the rest of your dish isn’t as filling.
You don’t have to throw away extra or old food if it’s still good. Repurposing baguettes and turning them into tasty dishes for you and your family is an excellent way to try new recipes and save money at the same time.