5 Old-School Cooking Tips Everyone Should Know
Jacques Pépin has written more than 25 cookbooks—and in his latest, A Grandfather's Lessons
, the 81-year-old shares his best time-tested advice.
The Reinvention of Old Bread
He may be a chef of international renown, yet Pépin absolutely refuses to throw away bread once it's past its prime (he jokes that it might make his own father turn over in his grave). Aside from the always delicious French toast, there are many more ways to repurpose a stale loaf—Pépin's go-tos are cubing it for croutons in salad, or turning it into crumbs to sprinkle over a gratin or soup. He even has a trick for reconstituting a whole dried-out loaf: Heat the oven to 400, pass the bread under running water for a few seconds to moisten the outside, place it directly on the oven rack and heat until it is hard and crusty on top and soft inside, about 15 minutes. Slice and eat within a few hours.