This post is a bit late isn’t it. The party season is over and we’re now into lazy and carefree. Oh well. Parties will come round again.
Someone asked me not long ago if I make sourdough crackers. They are so easy they are scarcely a recipe at all. Just sourdough starter, wholemeal flour, oil, salt, and perhaps some sesame or poppy seeds.
Ok, I’ll try to be a bit more specific. Because it is really worth making your own, and avoiding all those nasty transfats, as well as the ridiculous amount of packaging.
Like my Seedy Sourdough Crispbread, it starts just like regular sourdough, except I make a smaller batch of starter:
- Mix 1 cup of unbleached bakers flour, 1 cup of water, and 1 cup of starter. (I use my tank water, which has no chlorine or additives in it).
- Put half of it back in the fridge. You should be left with 1 cup of fed starter, to put in a bowl covered with a clean cloth on the kitchen bench for about 8 hours (overnight or for the day). It should end up frothy, like the picture.
- Mix in 1 cup of wholemeal flour, a little dollop of olive oil (perhaps a tablespoonful), and half a teaspoon of salt.
- You can add sesame seeds or poppy seeds too if you like. With this batch, I mistook mustard seeds for poppy seeds, and surprisingly, the crackers are ok. Though I think I’ll go back to poppy seeds next time.
- Flour the benchtop well, tip the mix out onto it, and knead in enough more flour to get a ball of soft, springy dough. Put a good dollop of olive oil in a large bowl, swirl the dough ball around in it to coat, cover the bowl with a clean cloth, and leave out on the benchtop for another 8 hours or so to prove. It should double in size, but with crackers there is a lot of leniency.
- Lightly oil three biscuit trays.
- Tip the dough out on the benchtop, knead very briefly, and divide up into three balls – two large and one small.
- Flour the bench well and, with a floured rolling pin, roll the first ball out to very thin – 5 mm or so – basically as thin as you can get it. Carefully transfer to the oiled biscuit tray and trim to fit. Prick all over with a fork and cut into triangles.
- Do the same with the second ball. Add the trimmings to the third (smaller) ball, knead again and do the same with it.
- Leave on the benchtop, covered with a clean tea towel, for a couple of hours.
- The crackers will have puffed up slightly. Bake in a slow oven for about 40 minutes, till they are firm and just colouring. Don’t take them too far – they will crispen up more as they cool. Cool on a cake rack and store in an airtight jar.