Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Herbed Crackers

food blogging 017

What to make when the markets are dry of fun fruits and vegetables? What’s left when there isn’t inspiration found in seasonal bounties? Onions are always a possibility. The other steady option is flour. And once you get starting becoming friends with flour, and learning about the delicate and amazing qualities of yeast, flour is fun to explore. It rises and bubbles and makes the most delicious of delights. You can punch it and pull it, and it will bounce back and be even better.

I always thought cracker recipes were overrated. Who wanted to toil making such an easily obtainable and shelf stable product? Aren’t Wheat Thins or Carr’s Water Crackers good enough? And selling at $6 a packet, I would never buy herbed flatbread crackers. But I did have some fun making  them! And truth be told, they aren’t the same as Triscuits, Wheat Thins, or Carr’s. They’re in a ballpark of their own.


1 cup warm water (about 110°F/43°C)
1 teaspoon active dry yeast
3 cups (15 oz) all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
3 TBs of extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp coarse salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 large egg whisked with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash
sea salt, for sprinkling
1/4 cup minced herbs, I used fresh minced rosemary & thyme

First, activate the yeast by combining the warm water, yeast and sugar. Once it has become foamy, stir in the flour, oil and coarse salt until a dough forms. knead the dough about two minutes, adding as much flour as necessary for it to become smooth and not sticky. Put dough in an oiled bowl, cover and allow to rise for about an hour or until it doubles in volume.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Turn out the dough on your work surface and divide into 16 equal portions. Roll out each piece on a floured surface until very thin, approximately 4"x10". Place rolled out sheets onto parchment lined baking sheets. Continue to roll out all dough and then brush with the egg wash and sprinkle with sea salt and herbs.

Bake, rotating sheet halfway through baking, until crisp and golden, 18-22 minutes. Let cool on the baking sheet then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. You can keep the crackers in an airtight container at room temp for up to 1 month, or Freeze for up to 3 months. It is important that the crackers cool completely before storing though, as otherwise they will become stale quickly.