Garlic Croutons

comments (0) August 17th, 2008

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cookinwithherbs susan belsinger, contributor
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About 1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1-1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
6 large or 8 small to medium slices of whole-grain bread cut into large, bite-sized cubes
3 to 4 cloves garlic, finely minced or pressed
About 1-1/2 teaspoons fresh, minced thyme leaves or a scant teaspoon dried thyme leaves, crumbled
1/2 teaspoon Hungarian paprika
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Allow about 1 slice of bread per person.  These are so good, you’ll want to make extra to snack on while you are cooking.  I like to use a good, hearty, country-style bread to make these, but you can use leftover baguettes, wheat, or even rye bread to make croutons—I often mix them.

Heat the olive oil and butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat.  When the butter is melted add the bread cubes and toss to coat.  Sauté and stir for about 4 or 5 minutes.  Add the garlic and thyme and toss and stir for 3 or 4 minutes more.  Reduce heat to medium low if necessary.  Add the paprika and season lightly with salt and pepper.  Toss for another minute or two and taste for seasoning. 
Turn the croutons onto a pan or plate to cool, or serve immediately, as needed.  These can be made ahead, but if the kitchen is humid they will get soggy if allowed to sit too long.  They can be quickly reheated if need be.  Garnish the soup with the croutons just before serving and pass any extras in a bowl.

Delicious with garden gazpacho.

posted in: croutons