Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Adaptable Crackers

This is my new party trick, adapted from a recipe by Martha Stewart, who calls them Parmesan Rosemary Crackers in her Baking Handbook. They're stupidly easy, keep for a while (when it's not too humid), look very impressive, and can be customized to include all kinds of flavors--just change up the toppings and the cheese. Click through for the recipe.

adapted from The Martha Stewart Baking Handbook
makes a very variable amount, depending on how you roll them

1 cup warm water
1 teaspoon yeast (I highly recommend switching to instant-active dry is for people who like yeast to be more work than it should be)
3 Tblsp olive oil
approx. 3 cups unbleached all purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons honey
1/4 cup freshly grated hard cheese
1 large egg, lightly beaten
more salt, fresh pepper, rosemary, cheese, poppyseeds, etc..., for sprinkling.

If using, active dry yeast, proof the yeast in the warm water. If using instant, just mix the yeast into the water and add the olive oil, flour, salt, honey. By hand or using a mixer (I really hate recipes that only give mixer instructions-not everyone has one, and everyone has hands), mix until the dough is soft and not tacky. Mix in cheese (right here is about where you'll throw out the wooden spoon and get your hands into it). Knead a bit until the dough is soft and supple, not too much. Form it into a ball, and let rest, covered, for ten minutes.

Put the dough into a lightly oiled bowl and cover, refrigerate until well chilled (an hour or overnight). When chilled, preheat the oven to 350 and turn out dough onto a lightly floured countertop and divide into however many pieces you'd like. Roll out as thin as possible and transfer pieces to a baking sheet with parchment.

Brush the crackers with the egg wash and sprinkle on the toppings of your choice. Bake the crackers for about 15-20 minutes, until crisp and golden.

1 comment:

Luke said...

I am lazy, and this still qualifies as easy for me! My other favorite lazy cracker snacker, is taking a sheet of phyllo dough. sprinkling it with lots of Parm on one side, rolling it thin, then cut into strips. Twist the strips and then bake on a sheet pan with parchment paper. It is not really baking, but darn toot'n easy.