Crispy crackers are great to satisfy that need for a crunchy snack, or to carry a piece of cheese or dollop of creamy dip to one’s mouth. (It’s unbecoming to simply spoon in the dip in the presence of company…otherwise I’m okay with it. ) I’ve tried to make grain-free crackers before and they’ve always turned out too fragile (at best), or not tasting like crackers (the worst). Today I’m pleased to announce great success! Borrowing from two cracker recipes (see above), I managed to make a cracker that is firm enough to carry a topping without breaking, has a pleasant crunch, and tastes like a multi-grain cracker. I must warn you, they are addictive and it’s very difficult not to take the whole batch to the couch and chow down!
- 1/2 cup blanched almond meal
- 1/2 (heaping) cup walnuts
- 1 tablespoon coconut flour
- 1/4 cup roasted, salted pumpkin seeds
- 3 tablespoons roasted, salted sunflower seeds
- 3 tablespoons sesame seeds
- 1 tablespoon flax seeds
- 3/4 teaspoon coarse sea salt
- 2 tablespoons butter, grass-fed (I like Kerrygold)
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon water
- Optional: ground black pepper, minced herbs or Parmesan cheese for additional flavoring
Pulse almond meal, walnuts, coconut flour, and sea salt in a food processor until well ground. (Be careful not to over-process or you will have nut butter.) Add the seeds and pulse until almost fully ground, leaving some seeds to provide texture to the crackers.
Pulse in butter, then the egg and water. The dough will start to form a ball in the food processor.
Scoop out the dough and place on a sheet of parchment paper. Cover with a second sheet of parchment paper; roll out the dough with a rolling pin to 1/8 inch thick, or less. You want it to be thin and even, but not too thin or they will break easily. Even up the edges best as possible with your hands, then roll out again lightly so the dough is “square-ish”.
Using a pizza wheel, cut the dough into the size crackers you would like (1 to 2-inch squares are nice). Sprinkle the dough with a little coarse salt, or if you’d like more flavoring, add ground black pepper, minced herbs (i.e. rosemary), or grated Parmesan cheese.
Transfer the dough with the bottom sheet of parchment paper to a baking sheet. Bake at 300F for around 25 minutes, or until the crackers are lightly browned and crisp. If your oven has a convection fan, turn it on. Also it helps to turn the pan around half way through baking since the oven temperature may vary front-to-back. Keep an eye on them so they don’t burn.
Had a good day at Tall Stax recently- big haul of vinyl. Here’s a few choice ones I picked up. First up, one of the few bright spots in the otherwise woeful musical decade of the ’80s was power pop- and Everywhere at Once from The Plimsouls was a prime example. Everyone knows the big single from this- “A Million Miles Away”, but the rest of the record, featuring the early work of Peter Case, is great.
Great? Ya want great? Doesn’t get much greater than the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, and her 1971 Live at Filmore West album is a scorcher. What impresses you on this record is Franklin’s range- from the opening “Respect” to a churning “Love the One You’re With” and a duet with Ray Charles on “Spirit in the Dark”, she infuses every song with a rare passion and energy. Feel it!