Thursday, March 6, 2014

At Home: Cheese Crackers

My number one go-to snack is cheese and crackers.  Ever since I was a young child who needed an after school snack to study breaks in college days to an afternoon pick me up after work these days, I love eating cheese and crackers - or better yet, cheese crackers. You know, those bright orange cheese crackers that come in a variety of shapes and flavors? Yeah, those are delish and I can easily polish off a whole box.  So for my next experiment of What Micky Eats...At Home, I make Cheese Crackers that are easy to customize.

Cheese Crackers (Adapted from Rachel Cooks)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 8 oz sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • ¾ teasp salt
  • 2 Tbsp cold water 

- In a food processor, pulse everything except water together until it looks like course crumbs.
- While pulsing, add in water 1 tablespoon at a time.
- Remove from food processor, mold into a ball, and wrap in plastic wrap.
- Put in refrigerator for at least 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Roll out dough into a thin layer and cut into squares. (I used a pizza cutter.)
- Use a toothpick, or the end of a skewer or scissors to poke a hole in the middle of each cracker.
- Place crackers on lined baking sheet (Silpat or parchment paper work fine.)
- Sprinkle tops with a bit of sea salt.
- Bake for 13-15 minutes or until crispy.
- Let cool and enjoy!

Call them homemade Cheez-Its, Cheese Nips, Goldfish, what-have-you -- they are sooo good and easy to make as a cheesy snack to have on hand.  And they taste exactly like the boxed crackers - if not better.  If you don't have cheddar, just mix it up and use whatever strong cheese you have on hand.  Something like Parmesan and herbs, or spicy pepper jack would work great.  Next time I may also take more time out and use a small cookie cutter to make cute shapes.  Otherwise, the simple square tastes just fine!  You can place them fairly close together to bake as they do not spread much.  But I would also try to roll the dough thinner, as they do tend to puff up.  Not a problem for me, as the big cheesy crackers were yummy - on the other hand I see the benefit of having thinner dough, thus creating more quantity of snacking goodness. Store the crackers in an airtight container for up to one week.

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