Also Known As
Derived from processing bread into fine powder, bread crumbs are commonly used al around the world. Bread crumbs are usually made from left over bread and is an optimum way to avoid wastage of bread. They are usually light pink or light brown in colour and a fine powder if ground from toasted or dried bread. If ground from fresh bread, they are white in colour and crumbly in texture.
The main role of bread crumbs is to act as a coating agent before pan frying or deep frying certain foods. Dried breadcrumbs are used to make a crisp and crunchy coating for fried foods. However, fresh breadcrumbs wouldn't serve the same purpose. They produce a mush softer coating or crust and are mostly used in stuffings rather than as a coating.
The best way to make bread crumbs is to grind in a food processor, blender or a mixer. However, if you don't possess them, you can use a knife. Approximately 4 slices of bread will make one cup of crumbs.
"Panko" bread crumbs are a Japanese version of dry bread crumbs that are sold plain or seasoned with herbs. Earlier they were sold in only Asian supermarkets but now are sold in select food stores also.
How to select
If making bread crumbs at home, decide whether you want fresh or dried bread crumbs as per recipe requirement. If purchasing branded bread crumbs, ensure that you check the manufacturing date, expiry date and packaging beforehand.
· Bread crumbs are mainly used as coating agents for pan fried and deep fried foods. Cutlets, veg patties or burger pattice are all first coated with a refined flour or corn flour paste and then coated with bread crumbs. A coating of bread crumbs actually gives the patty a defined shape and holds it together. It avoids breaking of the patty when deep fried. Once fried, it gives a crisp texture and golden brown colour to the end pattice or cutlet. Usually dried bread crumbs are used for coating deep fried foods.
· Fresh bread crumbs are used as stuffing for various meats and poultry based main courses.
· Bread crumbs can be sprinkled as topping on au gratin recipes before they are baked.
· Panko bread crumbs go very well with seafood. It is commonly used in preparation of crab cakes etc.
How to store
Always store bread crumbs in an air tight container away from moisture and humidity. If you have used bead crumbs in a recipe and they are slightly moist, ensure that you don't mix them with the fresh stored lot. Store the used bread crumbs separately.