Make your own crumbs – they taste better and have a nicer texture than the store-bought variety. And they’re a great way to use up stale bread.
Remove crusts from bread and whizz in a hand blender or electric coffee grinder to achieve desired crumb size – fine but not powdery.
Use as is, dry fry on top of the stove or bake in a 180 degrees oven until golden. To avoid oil-frying, the crumbed item needs to be cooked in a very hot oven, preferably on a heated baking tray.
Up the tempo
Use wholewheat, rye, brown or white bread. Pita and exotic breads may also be used.
Go Italian with finely chopped Italian parsley, lemon peel and crushed garlic.
Add a splash of red wine with dried red chilli flakes.
Go North African by adding ground cumin and coriander, chilli and finely chopped fresh coriander.
Go Indian with garam masala, cumin, coriander, fresh chillies and coriander.
Home sweet African – add finely chopped peanuts and dried chilli flakes.
Asian – add finely grated ginger, chopped lemongrass and Chinese five spice powder.
Go Spanish with paprika, crushed garlic, ground almonds and lemon peel.
For a bit of sweetness, add castor sugar, cinnamon and all spice.
Go Greek with crumbled feta, chopped Kalamata olives and chopped fresh (or dried) oregano.
Viva la France with a combination of fresh thyme leaves, chopped sage, milled pepper and crushed garlic.
Up the health quotient by stirring in a few seeds – sesame, poppy or onion.
Give ‘em stick
Avoid the usual batters – use the following to “glue” the crumbs on
Soft, spreadable goat’s cheese
Marmite or Bovril
Green or red curry paste
Lightly-beaten egg whites
Or stir crumbs into any of the above ingredients and use as a stuffing.
For a crumby alternative try the Greek style olive and feta topped fish