These little garlic bread snack cubes will be our garlic bread go-to at home from now on. They have everything you want in garlic bread – lightly crunchy outside texture with a centre that is still slightly chewy, all made even better with garlic-butter goodness…
I stumbled across a recipe on Epicurious for Bite-Size Garlic Bread with Fresh Herbs, and thought they looked so good that I would make my own version, hence Crunchy Garlic Bread Bites. I made these recently when we had relatives staying, and they proved a real hit – all three kids loved them!
We usually eat them as you would garlic bread – as a side dish with our main meal – but they would also be fabulous as an appetizer at your next get-together.
Normally I use fresh sourdough for this recipe, but on the occasion I took the photo above, I used sourdough that was three days old. ( I left the bread in it’s original packaging for three days so I could use it as an experiment – turned out great! See my notes if you are not using fresh bread) I have also made the recipe using half a loaf of sourdough and just halving everything else to serve less people. Or just make the whole loaf anyway – I don’t think you will have much left over!
Chef not required…
Bite sized cubes of garlic buttered sourdough, lightly crunchy on the outside, but still slightly chewy in the middle.
- 1 x 520g loaf sourdough bread - see notes
- 100g salted butter
- 1 large garlic clove - crushed
- ½ cup mixed fresh herbs to garnish - I used a mixture of parsley, with a little oregano & thyme
- Pre heat oven to 230c
- Line 2 baking trays with baking paper
- Place butter in a small heat proof bowl and microwave for 30 seconds, or until melted, then add crushed garlic
- Meanwhile, remove crust from bread and cut into 2cm or ¾ inch cubes - see note
- Place bread cubes in an even layer on baking sheets, and bake for 5 mins
- Remove cubes from oven (reserving baking paper) and place in a large heat proof bowl
- Slowly drizzle garlic butter on to cubes, mixing to coat as you go - I use a pastry brush for this - trying to get the cubes as well coated as you can
- Place cubes back on baking paper lined trays in a single layer, bake for 3-5 mins, depending on your desired amount of colour and crunch
- Remove from oven, toss lightly with herbs, serve immediately
I have found that the older the bread, the quicker it is to colour and crisp up. This is one reason why I have suggested a final cook time of 3 TO 5 minutes - as this will depend not only your desired level of crunch but also the age of your bread
As for the combination of fresh herbs, this can be your choice - I have only used the leaves from about 2 sprigs of thyme as it can be quite strong, along with parsley (the majority of the mix) and some oregano leaves - again not too much as it can be quite strong too. I just went out into the herb garden and cut what took my fancy
You could actually leave out the herbs altogether if you prefer - we have done this ourselves...still really REALLY good garlic bread - or maybe use parsley only. Your choice!
I have also made this with bread that I had frozen, I just thawed it first then proceeded as per the recipe - it turned out just the same
I find the easiest way to cut the bread into cubes is to slice it into 2 cm or ¾ inch slices first, then working with 1 slice (or 2 - one on top of each other) cut off the crust, then cut slice into cubes
**Special Note - Keep the crusts!!!! I use these to make my own breadcrumbs - just pop them into a zip lock bag in the freezer - then when you have time take them out to thaw (doesn't take long) then spread them on a rimmed baking sheet as evenly as you can and bake (or dry-out, really) at about 100c for 15-20 mins, depending on the freshness of the bread then whiz up in a food processor - keep going until you have a really fine crumb. I use these type of crumbs (as opposed to my chunkier, more moist home made crumbs) to crumb things like lamb cutlets where you need a really fine, dry crumb