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Chef shares major money-saving tip for 'reviving' stale bread: 'This was so satisfying'

"I am definitely going to try this!"

simple hack for reviving stale bread

This hack for reviving stale bread helps you save major dough.

Chef Tristan Welch (@chef_tristan_welch) provides a quick and simple hack for reviving stale bread that uses only a bit of water and an oven. Even the toughest sourdough can be transformed back into soft bread.

@chef_tristan_welch From hard as a rock to fresh as a daisy - revive your stale bread using this simple tip. I recommend enjoying it warm with a lot of butter! #stalebreadhack #stalebread #rubbishcooksathome #rubbishcooks #foodwaste #fyp #foryou #foryoupage #viral #scrappycooking #foodwastewarriors #sustainability ♬ Love You So - The King Khan & BBQ Show

The scoop

To begin, run a stale loaf of bread under hot or cold water for 10 seconds — this might seem blasphemous, but trust the process.

Chef Welch recommends putting the wet loaf into an oven at 390°F for about five minutes — longer for larger loaves. The result is a loaf with soft, bouncy bread on the inside and a crispy exterior.

For bread that's already been cut into, keep the exposed end out of the stream of water and bake at the same temperature for the same amount of time.

In the bread-making process, the starches in the flour get hydrated by water. When the bread is baking, the starches turn into a gelatinous form and then soften. 

Once out of the oven, the starch recrystallizes and de-gelatinizes, causing the bread to turn dry and stale.

Adding heat to a stale loaf of bread can release moisture from the starch crystals, but too much heat can cause water from the bread's interior to evaporate. 

With this hack, the water turns into steam in the oven and rehydrates the bread's interior — and the heat crispens the crust of the bread.

By adding water and heat, you can effectively bring a stale loaf of bread back to life.

How it's helping

Because this hack keeps you from throwing away bread — literally and monetarily — the most obvious benefit is the money you can save.

This hack also addresses the bigger problem of food waste.

Americans waste as much as 40% of our national food supply annually, and food is the largest category of waste in our landfills.

As food decays in a landfill, it releases a potent air pollutant called methane that collects in our atmosphere and causes the planet to overheat.

While 40% of our food supply wasted might sound like an overexaggeration, think about the small amounts of food we waste each day or week. Now multiply this by a year — small amounts of waste can add up.

Similarly, small actions to prevent food waste can also add up, which is why hacks like these are so important.

What everyone's saying

Many commented that their families have been using this trick for decades, whereas others were mind-boggled by this genius way to make stale bread soft again.

"As someone who hates wasting food this was so satisfying," one user commented.

Another person added, "I normally just make croutons, but I am definitely going to try this!"

And this hack isn't limited to bread loaves — one person commented, "you can do this with roti and naan too."

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