No, you’re not hallucinating, I have indeed agreed to be a part of my first group cooking project which happens to involve nothing but baking.
Me, who won’t, can’t and does not like to bake.
Me, who ruined the Rhoades frozen rolls at Thanksgiving.
Me, who recently ran to the store and bought a box of Jiffy rather than make something as easy as cornbread my scratch.
This project is also a vehicle to promote a new cookbook by “Joy the Baker“. Always great news to see one of our fellow bloggers publish a cookbook.
For our first project, we were given the option of preparing Chocolate Fudge Brownies with Chocolate Butter-cream Frosting, or Flax Seed and Cracked Pepper Crackers. Being the savory type, and obviously “crazy in the head”, I chose those crackers over chocolate fudge and butter-cream.
After reading the recipe, I was concerned that I wouldn’t be able to find some of the ingredients. Sounding completely foreign to me were things like golden flax seed…ground flax seed meal…flour…OK so I’m exaggerating on flour, everyone knows I’ve used it to bread meat. But thanks to my local health food store, Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage, I was delighted to come out with every single item I needed. The flax products were in the back corner in the vitamin section??? Took me a while to find them.
Let’s get started.
The instructions appeared to be simple and straight forward and warned that the dough would be “shaggy” before turning it out on my lightly floured surface. Going to work with my shaggy dough and lightly floured rolling pin, I realized something was obviously wrong. This stuff was absolutely not going to roll into anything. Being doughaphobic and not familiar with how it should look and feel, I made an executive decision to correct the problem by adding another teaspoon of buttermilk…
Seemed like things were rolling along much smoother.
I got the dough rolled out to 1/8 inch thick. Instructions then said to use a 1 1/2 inch round cookie cutter or a pizza cutter to cut into squares. I did the latter since I don’t own a cookie cutter. At this point, I was extremely proud of my perfect little square crackers. Just bake the them for about 18 minutes until golden and you’re done. Easy.
Texture: A little chewy. I’m not sure if that’s how they’re supposed to be? I’ll be anxious to read other posts.
Flavor: Love the nutty accent that the flax brings to this cracker. And the pepper? I’m a big fan so added even more than I thought would be socially acceptable. And after a smear of goat cheese, as Joy suggests in her book, I was smitten.
Process: After the inauspicious beginning, these were a breeze to make. A fun project for a snowy day.
Flax Seed and Cracked Pepper Crackers…They’re what’s for a Healthy Snack.
- 1//4 c. golden flax seed
- ¼ c. ground flax seed meal
- 1 c. whole wheat flour
- ¼ c. all-purpose flour
- ½ tsp. baking soda
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 2 Tbs. unsalted butter, cold, cut into cubes
- ½ c. buttermilk
- Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 325 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flaxseed, flaxseed meal, flours, baking soda, and salt. Add the butter, and using your fingers, quickly work the butter into the dry ingredients. Some of the butter will resemble oatmeal flakes; others will be the size of small pebbles. Make a well in the center of the mixture. Add the buttermilk, and use a fork to bring all of the ingredients together. Make sure that every bit of flour is moistened by the buttermilk. The dough will be shaggy.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface, with a lightly floured rolling pin, roll out half of the dough. Roll just thinner than ⅛ inch thick. Use a 1½-inch round cookie cutter to cut out crackers, or use a pizza cutter to trim the edges and cut the dough into 1½-inch squares. Prick each cracker with the tines of a fork and place on a baking sheet.
- Bake crackers for 15 to 18 minutes, until slightly browned around the edges. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before placing in an airtight container to store.
- Will last, in an airtight container at room temperature, for up to 4 days.