May 1, 2010

Ridiculously Easy Whole Wheat Crackers

My roommate is coming home tomorrow! That deserves an exclamation point because she's been on a road trip with her boyfriend for the past month. They went to Denver first and then through California and up the Pacific Northwest and, I have to say, I was definitely jealous. I love San Francisco and I am itching to visit Portland and Seattle. I can't wait to hear all about her travels and see pictures!

But the point of all that is, I wanted to have something nice planned for when she got home (and to congratulate her on a job she just got!).  I went out and bought a bottle of her favorite wine varietal, Tempranillo, a deep red that's rich and fruity. I was also suckered into buying some AMAZING cheese at Whole Foods. The cheese guy gave me a sample and after tasting it, I could NOT turn it down, especially after I read the blurb which mentioned it went well with Tempranillo.  Just so you know, this cheese I got is called La Tur and it's produced by Alta Langa.  It's a creamy blend of cow's, goat's, and sheep's milk that's slightly tangy and incredibly spreadable. Waaay better than brie if you ask me.

But the point of all this is, I needed some crackers to go with the cheese. Whole Foods has great crackers (especially these ones called Raincoast Crisps) but the great ones cost at least $6 or $7, some even more (see: Raincoat Crisps).  No matter how good they are, spending that much money on crackers seems kind of like flushing it down the toilet.  Not to be discouraged, I headed to Target to get something of the simple and cheap variety.  Unfortunately (or fortunately), I'm a label reader and the ingredient list on most cracker boxes I picked up was long and sketchy.  Sure, they had Kashi's and Wasa Crisps there but, nothing was quite what I wanted so, I thought: why don't I just make my own?

And so I did. And it was so ridiculously easy that I can't believe I didn't try it sooner.  I made up this recipe on my own and it came out really well. Simple and wheat-y, which is just what I wanted. Of course cracker variations are endless so feel free to stray from this recipe entirely if you so desire. I just wanted to spread the word that whipping up your own cracker is, well, a snap.

Ridiculously Easy Whole Wheat Crackers
My crackers came out a bit under-salted so I've upped the salt to 1/2 teaspoon here.  You could also sprinkle some coarse salt over the top after lightly brushing them with olive oil (I did this with fine grain sea salt, and while the taste was right on, they came out looking a bit ashy).  You could also sprinkle the top with seeds or grated cheese.  Endlessly adaptable.  

Ingredients

1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
1/4 cup rye flour
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
3 tablespoons wheat germ
2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
1/2 teaspoon fine grain salt (you may want to use a bit less if you choose to top them with coarse salt)
1/3 cup cool water, plus more as needed
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for tops (optional)

Preparation
Preheat the oven to 325 F.  Mix all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl.  Add the water and olive oil and knead until the mixture forms a uniform ball of dough.  Add more water, a 1/2 tablespoon or so at a time until you get the desired consistency.

Divide the dough in half and place one half on a floured work surface.  Roll out about an 1/8 of an inch thick, lifting and throwing a bit more flour underneath as you go.  Brush dough with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt or other toppings if desired.  Cut the dough into desired shapes with a pizza cutter or sharp knife and transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet (feel free to put the crackers very close together).  Do the same with the other half. 

Move the baking sheet(s) to the oven and bake until lightly browned and crisp rotating the baking sheets 1/4 turn every 8-10 minutes.  Mine took about 40 minutes but I started the oven at 300 F and moved up to 350 F near the end.

1 comment:

Gillian said...

You don't blog anymore, you OR Olga. It makes me feel lonely sometimes. :(

Haha, hope you're up to no good! :)