Homemade Artisanal Crackers

by Dec 30th, 2010 // Appetizers, Recipes, Sides, Snacks

Homemade Artisanal Crackers

Homemade Artisanal Crackers

My dad knows how to make two things: frozen pizza and homemade artisanal crackers. I know it seems incongruous… a man who only knows how to heat up a pizza can make such a beautifully delicious cracker. As the story goes, my parents first tasted these crackers at the home of Chuck and Kay Carlson a mere 32 years ago. My father fell in love with the thin, crispy taste and the rest is history. What I mean is that it is literally a part of my family history.

Homemade Artisanal Crackers

Every year since that fateful first taste, my brothers and I would convene in the kitchen with my father for our annual cracker making extravaganza. There was a job for each of us. A roller. A painter. A poker. A sprinkler. We’d always make a double batch. (My kid wanted all 4 jobs!)

Homemade Artisanal Crackers

The crackers were to be made between Thanksgiving and New Years and would be served whole or broken up with various dips to holiday visitors. Each year folks would ask for the recipe, but no one was as devoted as my father.

Homemade Artisanal Crackers

There’s just something about a homemade cracker that’s extra special. Something almost indescribable that makes all the work worth it. Something you should definitely try with your own kids. You won’t be sorry you did. And who knows, it may just become a part of your family history too. Now for the recipe…

Homemade Artisanal Crackers

Prep Time: 3 hours (mostly unattended) Cooking Time: 8 to 10 minutes (per batch)

Ingredients
2 Packages dry yeast
2 cups warm water 110F
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 cup butter, melted + cooled
6 cups of white flour
egg glaze (1 egg mixed with 1/4 cup water)
sesame seeds
course salt
oregano

In the bowl of a mixer combine yeast and water and let sit for 5 minutes. Add sugar, salt and butter to yeast mix and stir in 4 cups of white flour until evenly moistened. Mix on medium speed with the paddle attachment for 5 minutes. Push dough off paddle and stir (by hand) 1 1/2 cups of flour in to mixture. Use your dough hook to kneed the dough. Add 1/2 to 1 cup more flour if necessary. Kneed until dough is smooth and pulling away from the edge of the bowl. Remove from bowl, oil the bowl with cooking spray and return dough to oiled bowl turning to coat it evenly. Cover with a damp cloth until it has doubled in size. (About 2 hours.) Punch down dough and knead lightly to release bubbles. Divide dough into twelve even balls place on cookie sheet about 2″ apart. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest at room temperature for a second rise. This should take about 45 minutes. Prepare your egg glaze by beating an egg lightly with 1/4 cup of warm water. Arrange racks in your oven with one on top and one on the bottom and then preheat to 400 degrees. Roll out dough balls on a well floured surface to 12″ diameter until paper thin. Roll dough on to rolling pin and unroll on to ungreased baking sheets. Brush lightly with egg glaze. Sprinkle some with sesame seeds and course salt and others with oregano and course salt. Prick surface with fork lightly. Place on lower rack and bake for 4 or 5 minutes. Move to the upper rack and bake for 4 or 5 minutes or until golden brown and puffy. Cool crackers on wire rack. Continue rotating in new baking sheets until dough is used up. Store in air tight plastic bags. Break upon serving. Makes 12 giant crackers or many more small ones.

Homemade Artisanal Crackers

artisnal crackers

10 Comments on “Homemade Artisanal Crackers”

  1. 1.) Melissa
    December 30th, 2010

    Yum! I would love some homemade crackers…

  2. 2.) Penelope
    December 30th, 2010

    Sounds delish. Will have to try them with the stew this weekend.

  3. 3.) paulajakobs
    December 30th, 2010

    Mmm sounds good.

  4. 4.) michelle
    December 30th, 2010

    what a great tradition! this is why i bake for/with the kids…so they have some awesome childhood memories! thanks for sharing…the crackers look so tasty!

  5. 5.) Caroline
    December 30th, 2010

    …. I think I know what I'm doing this afternoon…

  6. 6.) tryityoumightlikeit
    December 30th, 2010

    I'm going to make these soon. We eat so many crackers at our house.

  7. 7.) RosalindEve
    December 30th, 2010

    yum!

  8. 8.) Holly
    December 30th, 2010

    If I'd known that making homemade crackers was so easy I would've done it before! I always presumed it was harder than making bread… I'm not sure why. Doesn't appear to be too bad! I bet they're delicious with hummus….

  9. 9.) abailey
    December 30th, 2010

    Do you think it's necessary to have a stand mixer? Is there a way to do this without one?

  10. 10.) Susan
    December 31st, 2010

    At first glance I thought the title said 'animal crackers'… I'll be trying to make these regardless…

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