Bread…down to the last crumb

Bread...To the last crumb


True homage to bread, this sacred food, staple food for most of humanity, the book Until the last crumb gives us a host of do-it-yourself bakery recipes and several ideas for not missing any crumbs. 

Fallen into the pot when he was little, the author, Mathew Foulidis, spent his childhood playing more often with his mother's and grandmother's cooking pots and utensils than with his own toys. After his first book The cooking of my Italian grandmother, published in 2016, he returns to us with this book dedicated to bread, and published by Parfum d'encre.

“I have always had a passion for cooking, transmitted by my grandmother from a young age. I also remember that my father, of Greek origin, took me with him to the bakery and how much I was fascinated by the good smell and the different shapes of bread. Bread has always been very important to my family,” says Mathew Foulidis, who, in addition to his approach as an author, leads a career as a wine importer.

Baking his own bread has become a way of life for him. “On Sundays, during the fall or winter months, I get up early in the morning and devote my day to baking. It's relaxing, and it puts me in a relaxed state of mind,” he explains.

In his book To the Last Crumb< em>, Mathew Foulidis shares all his secrets for making perfect bread, from the ingredients to the basic techniques, including several recipes for various breads, such as focaccia, panettone, Montreal bagels or pita bread Greek, among others. 


“Starting to make your own bread is quite an adventure, more complicated than making cakes. You have to be precise, there are ratios to respect and it's important to understand the chemistry behind that. That's why I tried to demystify and make bread making affordable, by offering recipes that anyone can make,” says the author.

In Until the last crumb, even making your sourdough seems easy, thanks to its detailed explanations. “I do it the Italian way, grating an apple and letting it ferment,” he says.

Baking bread is also a way of looking after your health, believes Mathew Foulidis. “Today, there is a gluten-free trend, but if we look at the sales figures, bread still plays an important role in our daily lives. With homemade bread, you know what's in it, and there are necessarily fewer ingredients that you don't want. It is also more digestible than that of the industry. When you start making bread, you can't do without it. » 

Beyond French Toast

There are many ways to recover and process leftover bread. In his book To the Last Crumb, Mathew Foulidis suggests a host of ideas that go far beyond our classic French toast recipe.

“A baguette does not age like a brioche bread that you keep for three weeks in a plastic bag. People's habits have changed. There are more and more artisan bakeries and many different varieties of bread are consumed. How to use these breads down to the last crumb is what I wanted to explore by suggesting several original recipes. »

Throughout the book, we discover how to turn leftover bread into gnocchi or lasagna, make soup, cakes, brownies and cookies, cheese or eggplant balls, and even create a pudding with leftover panettone. . Recipes as original as they are tempting!

“I think that in our time, we have to find solutions to counter food waste, and that people are looking for that. The first day, the smell of fresh bread is fabulous, and the following days, it is always so good. You just have to know how to use it,” says Mathew Foulidis.

Montreal Bagels

As a Montrealer, bagels hold a very special place in my heart. Whether you like them plain, toasted and buttered or topped with cream cheese and smoked salmon, bagels are one of the best breads around. Montreal is home to some of the best bagel bakeries in the world, so the bar was high when I set out to create my own recipe. Although my bagels are not baked in a wood oven as is the Montreal tradition, their taste, texture and aroma will make you think twice before going to buy some.

< p style="text-align:center;">Servings: 8 | Preparation: 30 to 40 minutes | Rise: 55 minutes to 1:15 a.m. | Cooking: 20 to 25 minutes



  • 296 g (11⁄4 cup) water
  • 85 g (1⁄4 cup) honey
  • 12 g (1 tbsp) instant yeast
  • 510 g (33⁄4 cups) white bread flour
  • 6 g (1 tsp) salt
  • 110 g (3⁄4 cup) sesame seeds*


* Sesame seeds can be replaced with poppy seeds.


  • 3 liters (12 cups) of water
  • 255 g (3⁄4 cup) honey 



  1. Combine water and honey in a large bowl and microwave for 30 seconds, or until mixture is slightly warm.
  2. Add yeast and let it work for 10 to 15 minutes.
  3. Add the flour and salt, then mix until a dough begins to form.
  4. Place the dough on an unfloured and ungreased work surface. Knead for 10 minutes.**
  5. Form a ball, place in an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside in the oven, light on, for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the dough has doubled in size.
  6. Place the dough on the work surface and, using a knife, divide it into 4, then divide each quarter into 2, so as to obtain 8 pieces in total.
  7. Form 8 balls of dough and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Cover with a dry cloth and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes on the counter.
  8. Poke a hole in each ball of dough with your thumb and forefinger, then, with a in a circular motion, stretch the hole until it is about 5 cm (2 in) in diameter.


** The dough will feel very dry and hard at first, but by the end of kneading it should be smooth and have the consistency of modeling clay.


  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C (425°F).
  2. In a large saucepan, bring the water and honey to a boil. Boil each bagel in the honey bath for 30 to 45 seconds on each side.
  3. Immediately roll each bagel in the sesame seeds.
  4. Place the bagels on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  5. Bake in the center of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes. 

French toast from my nonna Gina

My grandmother, Gina, grew up in a small, very poor farming village in the Italian Alps, on the border with Slovenia. Desserts were not common and my nonna was only two years old when World War II broke out. When telling her about this book, she told me the story of her mother, Rosalia, who made snitesevery year before Easter. It is actually what we know as French toast. At that time, sugar was very rare and Rosalia limited herself to sprinkling a spoon of it on each snite. Telling me this story brought a huge smile to my nonna's face.. So I asked him to make some for me and they were delicious! When she took a bite of hers, she said they were just like her mother's, which she had loved. I knew at that moment that this recipe had to appear in this book. A beautiful memory like this deserves to be immortalized!

Servings: 5 | Preparation: 10 minutes | Cooking: 10 minutes


  • 4 eggs< /li>
  • 125 ml (1⁄2 cup) of milk
  • 5 slices of country bread or a white no-knead loaf
  • 125 ml (1⁄2 cup) butter
  • 125 ml (1⁄2 cup) sugar


  1. In a large bowl, whisk eggs and milk.
  2. Soak each slice of bread in the egg and milk mixture on each side for at least 30 seconds, so that the bread absorbs enough liquid .
  3. In a very large skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat.
  4. Place the soaked bread slices in the skillet and cook on each side for 2 to 3 minutes, until tender. until golden brown.
  5. Place the snites in a serving dish and sprinkle with sugar.

< h3>Spaghetti with bread Spaghetti al pane

I discovered this pasta during my first visit to the Amalfi Coast. Contrary to what one might think, they are light and full of the classic flavors of southern Italy. When I'm in a hurry and don't know what to make for dinner, this recipe is a lifesaver. It takes less than 20 minutes to prepare and the taste is amazing.

Servings: 4 | Preparation: 5 minutes | Cooking: 20 minutes


  • 1⁄4 stale baguette, sliced
  • 1 can spaghetti of 450 g
  • 60 ml + 180 ml
    (1⁄4 cup + 3⁄4 cup) extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 5 ml (1 tsp) dried chili flakes
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 60 ml (1⁄4 cup) finely chopped parsley


  1. Preheat the oven to 190°C (375°F).
  2. In a blender, crush the slices of bread.
  3. Mix the bread with 60 ml (1⁄4 cup) of olive oil and place on a baking sheet covered with paper parchment.
  4. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown. Carefully watch the bread so that it does not burn.
  5. In a pot of boiling salted water, cook the spaghetti according to the time indicated on the package.
  6. < li dir="auto">Meanwhile, sauté the garlic and chilli flakes over low heat in the remaining olive oil.

  7. Drain the pasta and add to the olive oil. olive. Add lemon zest, toast and parsley.
  8. Serve with a generous amount of Parmigiano Reggiano.


Pancetta buns Lumachelles

When I was a child, my aunt Doris, my mother's sister, was my best friend. You can imagine how sad I was, at age 6, when she left Montreal for Italy to start her own family there. But I was able to visit her and, on many occasions, we went to the small bakery in her town of Orvieto. They sold lumachelles, an Italian bread stuffed with pieces of pancetta and shaped into the shape of a snail shell. /p>

As it is difficult to find this bread in Quebec, I decided to try to make it. The result exceeded my expectations! When I offered some to my nonna Gina, she looked at me with a big smile and said: “We would believe in Italy! When one of the best cooks I know gives me such a compliment, I know my recipe is a success. The lumachellesare the perfect afternoon snack, but because they're addictive, they never stay in the bread box for very long! 

Servings: 4 | Preparation: 5 minutes | Cooking: 20 minutes


  • 4 g (1 tsp) of instant yeast
  • 236 g (1 cup) slightly warm water
  • 106 g (1⁄2 cup) olive oil extra virgin olive
  • 2 large eggs
  • 545 g (4 cups) white bread flour
  • 3 g (1⁄2 tsp) salt
  • 150 g (1 cup) diced pancetta
  • 50 g (1⁄2 cup) grated parmigiano reggiano cheese
  • 2 g (1 tsp) chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 g (1 tsp) fennel seeds
  • 2 g (1 tsp) ground black pepper


  1. In a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine the yeast, water, olive oil, eggs, flour and salt.
  2. Blend at medium speed until a dough forms that does not stick to the walls. This step should take 5-8 minutes.
  3. Reduce speed to low and add pancetta, cheese, thyme, fennel seeds and ground black pepper.
  4. Place the dough on an ungreased, unfloured work surface then form a ball.
  5. Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and leave to rest in the oven, light on, for 1 hour 30 minutes.
  6. Place the dough on a lightly oiled work surface, punch it to deflate it and divide it into 16 equal pieces.
  7. Shape each piece into a small log about 17 cm (7 in) long.
  8. Roll each log into a snail shape, tucking the end under the finished lumachella.
  9. Place the lumachelles on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and cover with a damp cloth.
  10. Let stand for 15 to 20 minutes on the counter. Preheat the oven to 190°C (375°F).
  11. Bake the lumachelles in the center of the oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until golden brown.
  12. Enjoy slightly warm or at room temperature.

Panettone Pudding Buddino al panettone

This is the pinnacle of bread pudding! When I was a kid, my mom made this pudding on Christmas morning with leftover panettone from the night before. The aroma of panettone cooking in the oven filled the whole house. That was delicious ! If you like panettone and French toast, this pudding will satisfy you. 

Servings: 8 to 10 | Preparation: 10 minutes | Cooking:1 hour 30 minutes


  • 1.25 l (5 cups) of milk
  • < li dir="auto">5 eggs

  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) vanilla extract
  • 1 classic panettone 1 kg, cut into cubes
  • 125 ml (1⁄2 cup) maple syrup
  • 30 ml (2 tbsp.) tablespoons) icing sugar


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F).
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs and vanilla extract.
  3. Add the panettone cubes and stir to coat each piece with the milk and vanilla extract mixture. eggs.
  4. Transfer the mixture to a buttered 33 cm x 22 cm (13 in. x 9 in.) baking dish and cover with aluminum foil.
  5. Bake in the center of the oven for 1 hour 30 minutes.
  6. Remove from oven and drizzle with maple syrup.
  7. Let the panettone pudding cool for 5 minutes and sprinkle with icing sugar before serving.