You might have heard that Bread is the stuff of life, well I agree with it as bread is one of the most common staple foods used in almost every country. Every other household pairs up bread with a variety of options for breakfast, like with fried eggs or with spreads.
However, at the same time, it is a food that we waste the most. Yes, that’s true! According to research, we waste three slices of bread on average whenever we bring a loaf of bread at home.
This mostly happens when the bread becomes hard, or it goes stale. Here I will share a few tips with you to soften your bread and consume it again just like a fresh one.
Let’s Learn New Ways to Soften the Bread to Use it Again
The aroma of freshly baked bread straight from the oven is always a treat for my senses. However, I know the fact that I cannot get a fresh one all the time, so I tried out different tips and methods to keep the bread softer for a longer period of time.
To help you out, I’m sharing my tried and tested ways of softening the bread.
#1: Heating In the Oven Can Do Wonders
The first method I tried was heating the bread in the oven. And now, I often put the leftover bread in the oven and heat it to remove the moisture.
However, the oven first needed to be preheated. I set the oven to 180 degrees centigrade and preheat it.
Next, with a light hand, I wet the bread, making sure not to wet the bread too much; just over little damping would work well.
Lastly, I use aluminum foil to cover the bread and then heat it for good ten minutes. The hot bread becomes softer and aromatic again.
#2: Why Not Try a Microwave to Revive Your Bread
Microwave is another best option for getting softer bread within seconds. For this, I usually take a paper towel and moist it a little bit. You can also use a damp cloth in case of the unavailability of a paper towel.
Next, I wrap it in the bread and keep it inside the microwave and set the timer for five seconds. Tadaa! I get soft bread within no time.
If you are trying the microwave technique and not getting the softer bread as you desired, I would suggest you increase the time to 8-10 seconds.
#3: Try Out the Celery Stalk Hack
Most people use Celery in salads or soups. But have you ever heard of using a celery stalk to soften the bread? I was also amazed when a friend told me about this hack.
I thought to give it a try. I put a celery stalk in the bread’s packing or bag and closed it tightly. Next, I kept the bag in the refrigerator for the next couple of hours.
You can even keep the celery inside for a whole week. I noticed the bread absorbed the celery’s moisture and stayed fresh and soft.
#4: No Microwave or Oven? Steaming is Your Go-To Technique
I even tried steaming once, and it worked well. So, if you do not have a microwave or oven, you don’t have to worry about your hardened bread as long as you have a stove. You can easily soften your bread through steaming.
For this purpose, I took one cup of water in a pan and heated it. Once the steam was formed, I put the basket or a plate in the pan and placed the bread on it.
Next, I covered the pan with the lid and kept the bread for five to ten minutes in steam. The steam removed the hardness, and I got my softer bread back.
Ever Wonder Why Bread becomes Stale?
Fresh bread turns into a stale one when it loses its moisture. When bread goes stale, one can easily recognize it by its hard thick crust or change in its texture. The staled one not only loses its freshness, but its taste also changes.
Bread is basically a carbohydrate, in other words, it’s a starchy food. It gets a soft appearance due to the change in the crystalline structure of starch molecules while turning the dough into bread.
So once the bread started to cool down, the crystals started to form again. This whole process is called retrogradation. Avoid keeping the bread open in the kitchen or in cabinets, as the air enhances the retrogradation process.
I usually keep the bread in the refrigerator, as the bread stays fresh for a longer period of time when it is stored in a dry and cold place. However, at times it also gets stale in the refrigerator.
Utilize your Rock hard Bread
Yes, you read it right! If none of the methods works, I can still utilize the rock-hard bread in a number of ways. Let me share some recipes with you.
Bread crumbs for your frying items.
The easiest thing to do is to put your hard bread in a mixer and turn it into fine crumbs. You can store them in the zip lock bag, and next time you can have a coating for your fried items handy in your freezer.
Bread Pudding for your Sweet Tooth
Craving for some dessert but nothing at home except hard bread? Well, I tried making the bread pudding with the stale one.
I followed the good old pudding recipe but just replaced the fresh bread with the one I had, and the pudding turned out to be so appetizing, and the taste was also the same.
Cubes for your Soups & Salads.
This is what I usually do with my hard bread. I cut the slices into cubes and toss them in butter in a pan and then bake it for a few minutes. I love to add these cubes called croutons in my soups or salads.
Bread is a go-to food in every home. But getting fresh bread every time is a bit difficult. So you can opt for various techniques to revive your bread.
However, before trying out any of the methods, it’s good that you should check the bread thoroughly. If there’s any sour smell or mold, avoid using it, and it’s better to discard it.
Heating in an oven, microwave, or steaming can get you fluffy bread as a result, but make sure you need to consume the heated bread as soon as possible because if it cools down, it will be hard again.
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