Whenever I remember to make crackers, I always wonder why it’s taken me so long. Then I vow to make them more often, to experiment with lots of new recipes, to play around with toppings and spreads—and inevitably forget again. I think I’ll make it a March resolution to stop forgetting. I doubt it will work, but at least I have a couple of dozen crackers to enjoy in the meantime.
Crackers are one of those glorious blank canvas foods. Most of the time, they are tasty, but fairly plain, a neutral backdrop for whatever you wish to put on top. Hummus? Yes. Peanut butter? Yum! Cheese? Most definitely.
You can, of course, play around with toppings for these crackers, making your canvas less neutral but no less tasty. One of my favourite things to do is brush the tops of the crackers with egg white instead of the salt water wash and sprinkle on sesame seeds, or better yet gomasio, Japanese sesame salt.
Adapted from Peter Reinhart’s Whole Grain Breads.
- 1 C whole wheat bread flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 T coconut sugar or sucanat
- 1 T olive oil
- 6 T yogurt
- 1 T salt dissolved in 1/2 C warm water (for brushing on the crackers just before baking)
Mix together the flour, salt, and sugar, then knead in the olive oil yogurt, adding just enough water to make a smooth, pliant dough. Knead for about three minutes. Roll the dough into a ball, cover, and let rest for about 12 hours or overnight.
In the morning, preheat the oven to 425°. On a floured surface, roll the dough out very thinly—aim for about an eighth of an inch. If you have a pasta maker, by all means, go ahead and use it. Using a biscuit cutter or a glass, cut the dough into circles. Gather up the trimmings and repeat the process until you’ve used up as much of the dough as you can stand.
Put the crackers on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and dock them all over with a fork. Gently brush the salty water over them, then put them in the oven to bake for about 15 minutes, until they are browned and crispy. Cool them on a wire rack before storing in an airtight container.