Monday, November 22, 2010

Sourdough Crackers

 Since I started taking the sourdough course at GNOWFGLINS, I have attempted several different sourdough recipes. One of our favorites so far is crackers.

I had been in such a cracker conundrum. Years ago I bought crackers like Wheat Thins, Triscuits, Ritz, Saltines, Cheez-its and Goldfish. Since we have turned to more natural and organic foods, we have not found a decent replacement for these crackers. There are some that are alright, but they sure are expensive! As a result, we pretty much just didn't have crackers in our house. The only crunchy snack type food we had was Kettle Chips.

Until now.

These crackers are wonderful. They are perfectly crunchy and salty. What more could you ask for in a cracker? The recipe is very versatile as well. Whatever flavor you would like, you can make!

Sourdough Crackers
(Original recipe from GNOWFGLINS e-course, labeled as "Erin's Crackers")

1 cup sourdough starter
1/3 cup melted butter
1 - 2 cups flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 1/2 tsp. salt, divided

1. Combine 1 cup of sourdough starter and melted (but not hot) butter. Stir in 1 cup of flour (I used white whole wheat). Add in more flour 1/4 cup at a time until you have a stiff dough. Knead in flour until the dough is pretty stiff and no longer sticky. (I go by how the dough feels and not the amount of flour added.

2. Cover cracker dough in bowl and let sit for at least 8 hours to sour. (I generally make the dough sometime in the morning and then make the crackers in the evening. So mine sits about 12 hours.)

3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

3. Break dough in half. This ball in my hand is about half.

4. Smash the dough open on a clean counter or table. Sprinkle 1/4 tsp. baking soda and 1/4 tsp. salt on dough. (This is where you can get creative as well. I have added chopped rosemary, a cheese and spice blend, and a spicy cheese blend.) Knead in your ingredients to combine.

5. Cut parchment paper to the size of your largest cookie sheet. (If you don't have a very large cookie sheet, try breaking the dough in half again.) Place dough on parchment paper. Squish it down a little bit to make it easier to roll out. Place plastic wrap over dough. (The dough is pretty sticky and WILL stick to a rolling pin!) Roll out until paper thin.

6. Sprinkle about 1/2 to 1 tsp. salt evenly over the top. I use my hands to spread it around a bit and to make sure it all has salt. No one likes a cracker that isn't salty! Use rolling pin to gently push salt down into the cracker.

7. Use a pizza cutter to cut into cracker sized rows.

8. Slide a cookie sheet under the parchment paper. Place in preheated oven. Cook for about 15 minutes. (While this batch is cooking, repeat steps 4-7 with the second half of your dough.)

9.Pull crackers out of the oven. Check the edges as the thin edges cook fastest. Remove the edges and place on a cooling rack.

10. Cook crackers until lightly browned and crispy. Cool on cooling rack.

11. Enjoy!!!

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