hearthstrung

a not-so-humble cracker

After getting home from Saltspring Island, it was time to go about making dinner. With our fromagelicious booty providing the centrepiece of the summer meal, this totally came together without any any fuss. A quick salad, some sliced strawberries tossed with a pinch of cardamom and nutmeg, and a huge cheese board with some SSI jams and these crackers.

You know those ‘raincoast crisp’ things? The ones you buy for like five bucks (or more now, I guess) and could totally just eat yourself as a snack. Well I wanted to make them. In quantity. For a fraction of the price.

These are so easy. It’s literally just a matter of throwing everything together in a bowl, mixing, baking in loaf pans, slicing and baking again. There. Bis-cuit: twice-cooked.

You can freeze the loaves once they cool – they keep for months. And they slice well to when cold.

Not only that, you can make infinitely many variations on this basic recipe. Just make the base, and add whatever dried fruit, nuts, seeds, and herbs you want to try out. I’ve listed what I made below.

Fruit and Nut Crackers
(adapted from Simple Bites)

(base)
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup white flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups almond milk
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup honey
splash (like 3/4 tsp.) sherry vinegar (any other vinegar is fine; this is what I had on hand, and I like the flavour)

(fixin’s)
1/4 cup hemp hearts
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 flax seeds (ground or whole)
1/2 cup dried apricots, chopped
1/2 cup dried figs, chopped
1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts, chopped
1 Tbsp. fresh rosemary, chopped

In a large bowl, stir together flours, baking soda, and salt.  Add almond milk, brown sugar, honey, and vinegar, and stir. Add seeds, nuts, fruit, herbs, and stir just until mixture is blended.

Pour batter into small loaf pans, rubbed with olive oil. Bake at 350, until golden around edges and still springy on top (cake tester should remove clean – about 22 minutes. use judgement). Remove from oven and cool on wire rack.

Wrap tightly in tin foil and freeze slightly before slicing, or freeze for later use (best within two months, but can keep longer).

Slice thinly while still partially frozen (try to slice uniformly for even baking). Bake at 300-325 for 15 minutes, then flip and bake for another 10 minutes. They should be brown and crispy, but not burned.

Makes three loaves; one loaf yielded me around 28-30 crackers.

Oh yeah and they’re vegan to boot. If you want to do it the other way, replace the almond milk and vinegar with 2 cups buttermilk (what the original recipe calls for). I think next time I might even try with all whole wheat flour and honey/maple syrup.

These guys are just about to go in the oven.

Mmm cheese and crackers.

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This entry was published on Sunday, June 17, 2012 at 12:35 pm. It’s filed under food, general, recipes and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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