Easy Cracker Recipe

by A.J. Coltrane

The recipe below is from this allrecipes post. I’ve added a few modifications and suggest some other options.

1 3/4 cups whole wheat flour

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup vegetable oil [I used canola this time]

1 cup water

salt for sprinkling

[I added some minced rosemary to the dough — other tweaks are suggested below]

——–

1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

2.  In a medium bowl, stir together the whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, and 3/4 teaspoon salt. Pour in the vegetable oil and water; mix until just blended. [I allow for a 20-minute rest at this point]

3.  On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough as thin as possible – no thicker than 1/8 inch. Place dough on an ungreased baking sheet, and mark squares out with a knife, but don’t cut through. Prick each cracker with a fork a few times, and sprinkle with salt. [I used my kitchenaid pasta roller attachment instead of a rolling pin.]

4.  Bake for 15 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven, or until crisp and light brown. Baking time may be different depending on how thin your crackers are. When cool, remove from baking sheet, and separate into individual crackers.

Why this works:  The crackers maintain their “snappiness” at least in part because of the key phrase in the recipe above — “mix until just blended.” Working the dough any more than that develops gluten, which makes the crackers unpleasantly chewy instead of the desired result of snappy/crispy. The docking (“pricking with a fork”) prevents the crackers from blowing up like balloons.

Into the oven.

The Mark Bittman recipe posted here uses 2 TBP oil to 1c flour. That’s a 1:8 oil to flour ratio. The recipe above calls for 1/3c oil to 3-1/4c flour — a ratio of about 1:10. Bittman also bakes the crackers at 400F rather than 350F. I think Bittman is basically almost frying the crackers.

The recipe is also flexible — minced rosemary can be added into the dough, or the “sprinkle with salt” step can be augmented with sesame seeds, paprika, poppy seeds, or anything else that sounds good. Peter Reinhart’s “Lavash Crackers” recipe calls for misting the dough lightly before adding the extras. (Reinhart also calls for a 350F bake.)

The completed crackers. More rosemary would have been a good thing.

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