Don’t Throw Out the Heels. You Can Use Them in Tasty Ways.
I’ve always wondered why many people seem to discard the heels of a bread loaf. They taste the same as the other pieces, and you paid for them too, so why not use them?
I have found several ways to use to the ends up instead of simply throwing them out, and I’m excited to share them with you.
The easiest way, if you have someone in your family who doesn’t mind them and is willing to eat them, is to use them for making sandwiches as you would any of the other slices. If no one will accept the heels, there are other ways to avoid sending them to the trash bin or compost heap.
If you’re like my family, which goes through several loaves per week, then you’ll find yourself accumulating multiple sets of heels.
Everyone in my household leaves them in the bread bag, or occasionally I find them nestled in the breadbox alongside a newly opened loaf. After a while they start taking up space, so this is the time to find another use for them.
Heels make great French toast. After soaking the bread in the egg mixture, cooking it, and slathering it with butter and syrup, no one will even realize it’s a heel.
Another tasty use for these unappreciated pieces is to use them to make garlic bread. Melt your butter or margarine along with some salt and garlic (dried, roasted, minced, freshly pressed cloves, or even garlic powder all work nicely) on low heat in a small saucepan.
Line a baking sheet with foil for easy cleanup, and place sliced pieces onto the sheet.
Pour the butter mixture over the pieces, stirring often to make sure the garlic is spread evenly on each slice.
Place the cookie sheet into the preheated oven, and bake until crisp. Garlic bread goes great with many different dishes, so be creative while you’re using those heels instead of wasting them.
Last but not least, an obvious choice is to make your own breadcrumbs. You can toast the heels until crisp (but not burned), then cut into small pieces and roll with a rolling pin, or pulse in the food processor to make crumbs. Place them in an airtight storage container for storing.
Next time you need crumbs for cooking or breading, you will have a ready supply. You may also season your own to taste, using salt and pepper or maybe a blend or Italian spices.
You’ll always have a supply waiting the next time you want to make fried zucchini, fried chicken, or when you need a filler for your meatloaf recipe.
Now you’ll get what you paid for out of your purchases, and you won’t waste all your hard work if you make fresh bread at home. You can provide your family with tasty meals and appetizers. The ends can always be good for something, so try to think of ways to use up those rejects, and make the most out of your food dollars!
About Lynne Jaques
Lynne is a stay-at-home mother of two boys. As a former US military officer and the spouse of an active duty US military member, Lynne enjoys traveling the world (although not the moving part!) and finding new cuisine and methods of preparing food. She also has the habit of using parenthesis way too much!