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Great ingredients make for great meals. Whenever you can, use the highest quality supplies for your recipes. The flavor difference will always come through in your finished dish.

If there is an ingredient that you are not familiar with, check our Ingredient section. There are pages and pages of information about the ingredients used in my recipes.


 

Ingredients

Breadcrumbs

This simple ingredient has so many different types. It is important to read a recipe carefully and choose the correct breadcrumbs because they are important to the recipe's final texture. The two main types of breadcrumbs are dry breadcrumbs and fresh breadcrumbs. Dry breadcrumbs usually make for a finer, crisp texture while fresh have a moist crumbly consistency.

I don't like to use stale bread to make dry breadcrumbs and prefer to use bread that has been dried in the oven. This is due to the fact that stale bread makes for stale tasting breadcrumbs. When making dry bread crumbs you can either toast the bread or not - each way has a different flavor. Toast bread in the oven at about 300°F turning a few times until it is evenly browned. I let them cool on racks before processing in a food processor or blender, as the slight moisture that remains will make dry breadcrumbs moist.

If you don't want a toasted flavor, then simply dry the bread in the oven set on warm (this is 175°F on most ovens). Let them cool and then grind.

Fresh (sometimes called moist) breadcrumbs are just that - made with fresh bread. I find that the food processor makes better fresh breadcrumbs than using a blender.

Certainly you can use any type of bread to make your breadcrumbs - whole wheat, French, sourdough, rye, or even cinnamon raisin. Keep in mind that breads vary widely in the amount of fat and calories. I have not found a pre-made breadcrumb at the grocery store worth using.

Related Articles

Why are cereals and whole grains good for you?
The research about increasing whole grains and cereals in your diet proves an amazing range of benefits. It is likely that this is the result of an increased fiber intake for those adding more whole grains to their diet. In one study men who ate more fiber had a far lower risk of weight gain: up to 48% lower for the highest intake of fiber. For women, the effect was not as dramatic, but those eating the most fiber still had a decreased risk of weight gain of 19%.

Whole Grains and Heart Disease Risk
We know from one study that those who eat the most whole grains tend to have a lower Body Mass Index, a lower weight, and a lower waist circumference compared to those who eat the least whole grains. Whole grains have also been associated with a lower fasting insulin score (Bite, 12/19/07) and an overall lower risk of death among type 2 diabetics (Bite 05/26/10). These are indirect indicators that more whole grains in your diet can help reduce your risk of diabetes and heart disease.

Whole Grains, Bran Fiber and Diabetes
Over the last several years I've written plenty of articles about the positive effects of eating more fiber and whole grains. Eating more fiber can help adolescents reduce their risk of developing diabetes, while eating more fiber can help overweight adults lose more fat in their abdomen – which in and of itself is a risk factor for diabetes. Similarly, eating more whole grains, as opposed to more refined grains, seems to protect against higher fasting insulin scores – another indication of a risk of diabetes.

Eating Whole Grains May Help Prevent Age-Related Weight Gain
By now, you probably know that whole grains are better for you than refined flour. Well guess what? Now you’ve got another reason to make sure you’re eating your Wheaties® (or at least the whole-grain version): eating more whole grains seems to help reduce the amount of weight gained as you age.

Slim Your Waist with Whole Grains and Legumes
I've said for years that the most important factor in weight loss is the number of calories you eat versus the number of calories you burn. That said, we also know that some foods are more filling and satisfying than others, which is just one explanation for why those who eat more whole grains tend to gain less weight over the years. Further, those who eat more legumes seem to have a lower Waist to Hip Ratio (WHR).