Recently I tried something new that I had never baked before – crackers! I had found inspiration for this recipe online and made some minor modifications. The result was a cracker that was just like a Ritz! While I used a cheddar blend, it would be fun to try other cheeses to see how they work in this recipe. I would imagine that almost any “shredable” cheese would work nicely, and I’d love to hear what experiments any of you take on with other cheeses.
I should note that the recipe instructs that the dough be rolled to 1/8” thickness. Evidently, I am a bad judge of thickness. These crackers puff up considerably during baking. So, don’t hesitate to make the crackers as thin as possible. Thicker crackers result in almost a “puff”. The puffs were excellent right out of the oven, but after a day or two the thin crackers were my preference. Experiment with various thicknesses to see what you like!
I stored my crackers uncovered because the puff ones weren’t as crisp as I would have preferred. They never got stale and stayed good for 3 days (until I ate the last one).
This recipe might be especially nice for those of you who have children but don’t want to feed them too many processed foods. They are a great snack item and can be easily packed up for food on the go.
Adapted from Culinary Concoctions from Peabody
1 c all-purpose flour
¾ t salt
Pinch of cayenne pepper, optional
4 T cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
8 oz grated cheddar cheese blend (or whatever cheese you want)
3-4 T water
- With a pastry cutter or in a food processor, combine the flour, salt and pepper, then add butter and combine until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add grated cheese a little at a time until the mixture again resembles coarse meal.
- Add in 3 to 4 tablespoons of water, one tablespoon at a time, and only enough so that the dough forms a ball.
- Remove, wrap in plastic, and chill for 20 minutes or up to 24 hours.
- Roll the dough out to 1/8th-inch thickness. The dough will be drier than a pastry crust and you may need less flour on your surface. Using a pizza cutter, cut crackers into your preferred size and shape.
- Bake at 350° F for 15-20 minutes or until crackers are golden brown. If some crackers are cooking faster than others, mix them up part way through cooking.
- Remove from oven, cool, and enjoy.