I like making crackers. They are fast and fun and, with the right ingredients, oh so tasty! My little granddaughter was coming over for a few hours the other day and since she loves nothing more than messing with dough, I thought I’d prepare and refrigerate two types of dough and let her inner baker loose on half of each.
Both doughs are resilient and lend themselves to multiple re-workings, a must when a 4-year old is holding the cookie cutter. She is focused and precise but she hasn’t quite mastered the concept of dough real estate yet. She plunks the cutter down wherever she feels like it and then complains that she doesn’t have enough dough left to make new star or house shapes. Re-working was therefore the rule of the game and I am happy to say that you can practically rework these two doughs until there isn’t a crumb left. Not only that but a 4-year old can recombine and re-roll them out herself.
The Italian crackers on the left (the blonder ones) are adapted from a recipe by Edda Onorato, a blogger of French and Italian descent. I love her blog, Un déjeuner de soleil (in French and Italian): her voice, her photos and of course, her recipes. Packed with the tastes and fragrances of the Mediterranean, they never disappoint. So when I saw these crackers italiens: parmesan, fenouil et huile d’olive (Italian crackers with parmesan cheese, fennel seeds and olive oil) and read what Edda had to say about it, namely that it was an easy and flavorful recipe yielding a very resistant dough, I knew I had a winner. I messaged her and she gave me permission to translate the recipe for reposting on Farine. Thanks, Edda!
- 100 g all-purpose flour
- 100 g wholewheat flour
- 60 g grated parmesan cheese
- 16 g fennel seeds
- 86 g extra-virgin olive oil
- 62 g cold water
- coarse sea salt
- Mix the flours, add the parmesan cheese, the olive oil and the fennel seeds. Add pepper to taste and add water until the dough is homogenous.
- Shape in a ball, wrap in plastic film and refrigerate for one hour.
- Preheat over to 350°F. Roll out the dough to a thickness of about 3-4 mm. Cut out as desired (with cookie cutter or with knife).
- Dust with coarse salt. Arrange on a parchment-paper covered baking tray and bake for about 15 min. The crackers must become blonde.
- Cool on a rack.
- Having no access to T80 flour, I replaced it with Blanco Grande wholewheat flour from Coke Farm in San Juan Bautista which I buy at my local Farmers Market.
- Maybe because the flours were different or because I used more olive oil than Edda (always a possibility when working with volumes instead of weight), I used only about half the water she did.
- You can't see the coarse sea salt on the picture because I actually forgot to add it!
The crackers came out flaky, melt-in-the-mouth crunchy and wonderfully addictive (despite the fact that I had forgotten to sprinkle them with coarse salt). My granddaughter tasted one, declared it good, put it down and said she didn’t like it. I suspect the seeds were a turnoff. Oh well!
On to the whole-grain rye crackers Seeds again, I am afraid…