Panko Breadcrumbs: The Secret to Faux-Fried Crunch
In our Test Kitchens you will rarely see anything truly fried. Unless we are testing a "heavy" version of a recipe for the Lighten Up column, everything is oven-fried or pan-seared to develop a crust similar to frying, without the fat frying requires.
One of my favorite ingredients gives the texture and appearance of frying without the calories -- panko breadcrumbs. These Asian-style breadcrumbs are coarser than the American version, and so create a crunchy crust that can be just as satisfying as the crust on a deep-fried food. Panko breadcrumbs are available in most regular grocery stores now.