YOU MADE BREAD. It can also additionally be sourdough—as dense as darkish matter, and lots trickier than it seemed from the recipe—or oil-slick focaccia, or no-knead white, with yawning holes withinside the crumb. Whatever it was, you made bread, and now you’ve got an excessive amount of it, and it seems like a waste to throw it out. (At the same time, it’s developing an increasing number of stale.)
Home chefs around the arena have confronted a few models of this catch 22 situation for quite a good deal so long as bread has existed. The end result is a rich, international lifestyle of repurposing such leftovers. In a few cases, they’re moistened right into a thrifty mush; in others, a heel of stale bread will become the conduit for bananas, or shrimp, or any wide variety of greater glaringly scrumptious foodstuffs. Here are seven dishes and beverages that remodel scraps right into a spread. In nearly each event, those recipes are some distance higher than stale bread has any proper to be—and generally tremendously filling.
Made with coriander, garlic, olive oil, and, of course, bread, the Portuguese soup açorda tells the tale of centuries of Arab-Portuguese relations. While the bottom elements stay the same, açorda is regularly crowned with seafood, sausage, or a poached egg, relying on wherein it’s made. More not unusual place withinside the south of the country, it’s believed to be a free interpretation of tharid, a Middle Eastern bread soup regularly eaten withinside the month of Ramadan.
Though açorda is now frequently eaten with the aid of using adults, it changed into for a protracted time “a stand-with the aid of using dish for feeding infants,” writes Edite Vieira in The Taste of Portugal. It makes sense: It’s smooth to assemble, difficult to dislike, and doesn’t require an excessive amount of chewing. More than that, she writes, this bread porridge is “particularly tasty,” something your age. Vieira’s ee-e book consists of recipes for numerous forms of açorda.
For “authentic” kvass, the Russian gentle drink made via means of fermenting bread, yeast, malt, sugar, and water, you actually need rye bread. That, at the least, is the characterizing taste of this tart, fizzy drink, famous in Eastern Europe due to the fact at least 989 AD. (At the baptism of 1 Prince Vladimir, the unfold seemingly featured “food, honey in barrels, and bread-kvass.”)
In the thousand or so years due to the fact, kvass has been under the influence of alcohol via way of means of monks, seemed in Tolstoy novels (he nicknames it “pig’s lemonade”), and loved via way of means of generations of Russian faculty children, notwithstanding its 0.five percentage alcohol content. (Its Estonian cousin is understood as kali.) From 1967, the drink became generally determined on avenue corners, offered out of iconic yellow barrels, labeled квас, and under the influence of alcohol from communal glass mugs of doubtful hygiene. “Like beer, kvass is under the influence of alcohol chilled, so the advent of carts with kvass barrels at the streets intended that summertime season become nigh,” recollects Sergey Grechishkin in his memoir Everything is Normal: The Life and Times of a Soviet Kid. “Kvass became one of the awesome pleasures of a Soviet kid’s life, along with ice cream and elusive bananas.”
The present day drinker has options. You should buy the economic stuff—Nikola is one famous brand—or make it personal. Regardless, withinside the pastimes of public hygiene, it’s possibly profitable to make certain all people have their personal glass.
A precise day in Ethiopia—or anywhere, really—may begin with firfir. This famous breakfast combines ultimate night’s shredded injera, a fermented sourdough pancake, with spices, onions, and clarified butter. Similar jumbles of mashed-up flatbread arise all around the world—suppose Mexican migas or Ashkenazi Jewish matzo brei.
Traditionally, firfir is served warm, writes Kittee Berns in Teff Love: Adventures in Vegan Ethiopian Cooking, and eaten with a spoon or fork, or maybe greater injera, as “primo consolation food.” (Its bloodless counterpoint, a type of “injera salad,” is understood as fitfit.) Cooks regularly fold in different ingredients, such as leftover wat (stew), broth, or vegetables. Though very not an unusual place in Ethiopia, writes Berns, firfir is “really uncommon in Ethiopian eating places in North America.” To make it at home, you actually need the spice blend berbere, in addition to actual injera, made with the grain teff.
A Victorian chef in search of to repurpose a loaf of bread didn’t need to appear some distance. Mrs. Beeton’s Book of Household Management, the home bible posted in 1861, boasts no less than 5 recipes for bread pudding: “baked,” “very plain,” “boiled,” “brown,” and “miniature.” In each, stale bread is decreased to crumbs, blended with milk, sugar, and dried fruit, then heated into one strong mass. It’s frugal, stodgy, and a workout in Anglo-Saxon restraint.
By this point, Brits were ingesting a few models of bread pudding for centuries. Compared to its medieval forebear, a piece of moistened bread called a “sop,” the addition of sugar and fruit might have made Mrs. Beeton’s dishes are wildly extravagant.
Nowadays, bread-and-butter pudding is some distance extra common. Here, custard, leftover sliced bread, and raisins come collectively in a mixture that the British meals creator Nigel Slater likens to a fit to be eaten hug. (The Guardian’s Felicity Cloake has taken a stab at perfecting the recipe.) It’s a loved school-cafeteria stalwart, and one which some distance exceeds the sum of its parts. (Summer pudding is but any other British bread-primarily based totally dessert.)
To the informal observer, the Balkan bread mash popara would possibly sound a bit at the bland side. That’s kind of beside the point. For centuries, this combination of torn-up stale bread and a liquid—milk, water, or tea—has been used to stave off hunger and make assets pass similarly in instances of hardship.
But that doesn’t suggest you can’t gild the lily. Popara can without problems grow to be greater luxurious with the addition of fried onions, bitter cream, sugar, or cheese, or via means of including lard, butter, or a few different fats. Beyond that, it’s right all the way down to a depend on taste—whether or not you’d alternatively begin your day with easy popara, like a type of bread milkshake, or a chunkier texture, wherein portions of chewy bread are suspended withinside the mush. Either way, it’s the kind of meal that sits closely at the stomach, pushing any mind of lunch off into the remote future.0