Homemade croutons are incredibly easy to make and delicious. I always use my left over french bread to make croutons for the week. I learned how to make croutons more out of necessity than a desire to be a fancy pants in the kitchen. One night we ran out of store bought croutons and we just happened to have some french bread that was left over from a previous meal. Croutons can obviously be made from almost any bread and really only requires some sort of oil for the crisping process. In the following recipe I used a butter spread as my oil but you could most certainly use olive oil, which is now my preferred oil.
-1 Loaf of french bread
-grated Parmesan cheese (fresh)
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Thinly slice the french bread into 1/3 inch slices.
Lightly smear one side with the butter spread.
Sprinkle Italian seasoning.
Sprinkle a sparse amount of garlic powder on top. (Easy on the garlic powder, less is more.)
Sprinkle freshly grated Parmesan on the buttered side of the bread.
Cook in the oven on a thin baking sheet or pizza pan cheese side up until cheese has melted.
Once cheese has melted, flip each slice of bread over cheese side down and let crisp until golden.
Depending on your oven cooking time may very. Make sure your oven is completely heated before putting bread in the oven. The bread should be crisp throughout.
Chop bread slices into cubes.
*I have also used this recipe to serve bruschetta on and just as a side for pasta in place of a softer garlic bread.