The process of covering food with bread crumbs, cracker crumbs or also nuts, before it is cooked to improve the flavor and texture of the food after it has been prepared. Once the food is breaded, it is then baked, sautéed, broiled, or deep-fried to create a crispy, crunchy crust that covers the food. If the food being prepared is already moist, it is dredged in flour, dipped in eggs that have been beaten into a smooth, liquid consistency, and then breaded with the dried bread or crackers. If however, the food needs moisture it is advisable to first coat the food lightly with the beaten eggs and then dredge it in flour followed by another coating of the beaten eggs and then the final crumb coating. Always lightly shake off any excess flour after the food is dredged in flour. If desired, once the food is coated it can be air dried on a cooking rack for 15 to 20 minutes to enable the crumbs to adhere more securely to the food.
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