If you’ve been reading along you may have noticed my mentioning of the beloved Cheez-it. I love crackers, I especially love cheese crackers, and I’m craving some so badly.
There is also the question of the role of the Cheez-it. During a recent celebration at work a few of us were gathered ‘round the cube and discussing the merits of the Cheez-it as a snack on its own, or as an accompaniment to a sandwich. I swing both ways on this one. A handful of crackers is a great treat while reading or watching TV. But, I also love a side of Cheez-its with a good sandwich too. This was in in-depth debate, it came up again the other day when Matt said he wanted some Cheez-its and then Mike said, “Didn’t you guys debate whether it was a snack or not?” Yes, we talk about food all the time.
Technically I could probably buy some Annie’s Cheddar Bunnies or other health-food aisle snack, as they tout themselves to be a wholesome snack, but, if I am going to remain faithful to my challenge, I attempted to make a batch on my own.
A quick internet search produces several options. One from King Arthur Flour looked great, but required a bit of time- the dough needed to rise, and also called for Vermont Cheddar Cheese Powder- not sure I know where to find that around here. I’m going to try out Kitchen Snippet’s version, I have all the ingredients and it seems pretty simple. Snack time here I come!!
…Or at least it seemed to be that easy. The crackers did not come out as I had hoped, not a whole lot of flavor, but the cayenne just left a lingering burn on my tongue. Boo. And, I put them into a airtight container too soon and they got a bit soft, not so much crackery. But, here’s the recipe anyway, I reconmmend upping the salt a bit and taking the cayenne down a notch.
1 stick of butter (8 tablespoons) at room temperature
1 ½ cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon each of black pepper, cayenne pepper, and paprika
2 tablespoons cold water (and possibly a bit more) **I used about 6, just keep adding until the dough comes together**
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with some parchment paper.
Add water 1 tablespoon at a time and using two knives (or a pastry blender) crisscross the knives to cut the water into the dough and continue to add water, stir a bit until the mixture starts to form a ball
On a lightly floured work surface turn out the dough and knead it a few times to make it into one cohesive ball of dough. Let dough rest for half an hour, just there on the counter is fine. Or, the fridge if you have to step out and visit a puppy as I did on Sunday.
Roll the dough out thinly, about 1/8 inch thick. Cut into desired shapes
Bake for 15 minutes or until the crackers start to get just golden on the edges
Transfer the crackers to a cooling rack and store in an airtight container, or, eat them all at once. (Just kidding with that last one)