Make your own crackers
Published 10:01 am Wednesday, January 25, 2017
Genesis 1:29 — And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.
According to Jim Long, long time herbalist, gardener and author of “Easy Homemade Crackers Using Herbs,” crackers are truly an American invention, although there is cracker like foods in other parts of the world. Why would you want to make your own crackers, you may ask? Mainly because good crackers can include herbs from your garden and come out of your own kitchen. Crackers are easier than baking cookies in many instances, and the results are much better than most of the crackers you can buy.
So, maybe you’re an adventurous and creative person or you would like to surprise someone with your cooking style. Possibly, you just want crackers that contain only healthy ingredients rather than lots of chemicals, preservatives and artificial stuff. For whatever reason, feel free to experiment and make your own.
These make slightly hot and spicy, but flavorful party dippers. They also go well with soup or salad.
• 2 cups flour
• 1 teaspoon hot sauce (less for not so hot)
• 1/2 teaspoon celery salt
• 1/8 teaspoon ground celery seed
• 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
• 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
• 2 tablespoons butter, softened
• Dash garlic powder
• 2/3 cup tomato/vegetable blend juice, like V-8
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Mix together the flour, salt and pepper in a food processor. Add the butter and pulse blend until it resembles coarse cornmeal. Add the juice and remaining ingredients and pulse blend until you have a ball of dough.
Divide into two equal portions and roll out on a floured surface to 1/8 inch thick. Cut the dough into 2-inch squares and place them on an ungreased baking sheet. Prick each square 2 or 3 times with a fork and bake for 20 minutes, turning the crackers over after 10 minutes and continuing the baking. Makes about 70 crackers.
1. When rolling out cracker dough, roll it out very thin. The thinner the better in most instances, which causes the crackers to be crisp and lightly browned around the edges.
2. When crackers have cooled on the cooling rack, move them into airtight containers so they won’t absorb moisture from the air.
3. Crackers can be stored in airtight containers for about a week. They can also be frozen by placing in plastic freezer bags a few hours after baking them.
4. Homemade crackers aren’t always as crisp as store bought ones. Rolling them very thin, and pricking the crackers with a fork several times before baking will cause them to bake more evenly and be crisper.
For a complete listing of Jim Long’s books, visit www.LongCreekHerbs.com or write to Long Creek Herbs, P. O. Box 127, Blue Eye, Mo. 65611. Until next time!
Alice Russell, also known as “Me Me,” is a guest columnist who resides in the Randolph/Saxe area. She can be reached at LetsTalkHerbs@gmail.com.