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FreshTartSteph Recipe: Cheese Crackers with Rosemary & Black Pepper


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While you're busy baking holiday sweets, don't forget a nod to the savory. Homemade crackers are a thousand times tastier than their boxed counterparts (just like cookies!) and are a breeze to whip up. The cheesy, nutty crunch of these almond-meal cheese crackers need no topping, just a measure of discipline to not inhale a panful in one serving. A salty corner here, a browned edge there, and snip, snap, gone.

This recipe is a terrific base recipe—delicious as is, as well as highly customizable. The best part of cooking is making a dish your own, right? If you're new to cooking, it's important to follow recipes exactly while you get a feel for how things work. But as you taste and learn and understand the basic science, I'm all for playing around with seasonings and experimenting, using the ingredients you happen to have on hand, or trying something completely new. I happened to be feeling nostalgic about the rosemary in my fridge, as it's the last taste of my garden, so I added minced rosemary—and several grinds of black pepper—to the mix. Lovely.
 

crackers


Cheese Crackers with Rosemary & Black Pepper

Adapted from The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook by Elana Amsterdam
Makes about 30 crackers

These crackers are gluten-free and grain-free. Check out Elana Amsterdam’s blog Elana’s Pantry for more almond flour recipes.

1 1/4 c. blanched almond flour (Honeyville is an excellent brand)
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 c. freshly grated cheddar cheese
1/4 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 large egg
1 Tbsp. minced fresh rosemary (optional)
several grinds of black pepper (optional)
coarse sea salt (as garnish; optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine all ingredients except coarse salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse several times, just until mixture comes together as a moist dough.

Roll dough to uniform thinness—about 1/8-inch thick—between two sheets of baking-sheet-sized parchment paper. Lift off and discard the top sheet, then slide a baking sheet under the bottom sheet so that the sheet and dough are settled evenly on the pan. Using a pizza cutter, cut the dough into uniform cracker squares (whatever size you like). Bake dough for 10 minutes and then check—how long you bake them will depend upon how thinly you rolled the dough. The thinner the dough, the faster they'll brown, so keep an eye on them, adding a minute or two at a time until crackers are lightly golden brown. Because it's impossible to be perfect in your rolling, you'll likely have overly-browned edges, which is fine. They are delicious and pretty.

Let crackers cool on the baking sheet for 30 minutes, then break apart and serve. Store remaining (ha!) crackers in an airtight container.
 

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