Yes, I’ve been productive this weekend – largely because my hubby is away so I have been filling my time trying stuff out in the kitchen. It’s not that I am not productive when he’s here, it’s just that I feel less bad making a huge mess when I’m home alone. There’s also been a lot of dancing around the kitchen in an embarrassing manner to my favorite songs. But anyway…
Aside from the cottage cheese I made today, I also tried out for the second time, the Olive Oil Cracker recipe from 101cookbooks.com. I like to snack at work, and I thought it might be nice (somewhat cheaper and healthier) to make myself a salty treat for the office. I’ve tried these crackers before and though they turned out OK, I didn’t make them thin enough and also didn’t add enough flour to the dough while I was rolling it out so they were kind of hard to work with.
As a word of warning, this is a very sticky & messy dough to work with since it’s also full of olive oil, but this yields some tasty crackers and you can get creative with the seasonings to make any flavor you like. I used my Kitchenaid mixer to make the dough which was super easy:
The dough comes together fairly quickly and I let it rest on a plate covered in plastic wrap for about 40 minutes or so. Depending on how you cut the dough down – in the picture at the top you can see that I did small crackers, but on the original recipe page there is a photo of larger crackers – you may want to double the batch. If you are doing the bigger ones, then probably worth it, if doing smaller crackers, just stick with the original, otherwise you’ll be there allllll day making itty bitty crackers. I know I said I had free time, but not that much.
When it was time to roll out the dough into cracker form, I used my hand crank pasta machine. It’s important to continually dust the dough with flour as you run it through the pasta machine settings otherwise the dough will rip and be too sticky to work with. Also, I added my herbs during this portion of the process so that they would get incorporated into the dough:
I made 2 flavors – dill with garlic salt and curry powder with garlic salt – I added the garlic salt after the dough was rolled out and ready to bake.
To roll out the dough, its really really important to cut the ball of dough into very small working pieces. It’s a super soft dough so this makes it easier to work with. As I mentioned above, dust the dough, both sides, each time you run it through the pasta maker. I used the semolina flour for dusting. I ran each piece of dough through the machine starting on setting 6 (2x) – adding herbs here, fold your dough in half and run it through the second time), setting 5 (1x), setting 4 (1x) and setting 3 (1x). Once it is thin enough, cut into the sizes you want and place on the floured sheet. Place your crackers in the 450 degree oven and keep an eye on them – takes about 6-7 minutes for these guys to get brown – and about 2 seconds to go from nicely browned to burnt.
These crackers are great on their own or served with hummus or any other favorite dip.