This recipe is wonderful for anyone (like me) who loves homemade crackers but not the time it takes to roll out the dough and cut out all the crackers. These crackers are made with a batter that is mixed in the food processor and poured into pans. There is a short initial baking time, the crackers are cut into squares right in the pan, baked again… and they are ready to eat. It’s that easy!
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup oat bran or regular ground oats (see below)
1/2 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup water
1 cup milk
1 heaping tablespoon dried basil
1 scant tablespoon dried oregano
5 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
2 cloves garlic or garlic powder to taste
additional butter for brushing the tops of the crackers in the pan
Start with the dry ingredients. I use ground oats instead of the oat bran, so the first step for me is to pulse the oats in the food processor until they have ground down to a fine texture. I flavor these crackers with fresh garlic, so I pulse two cloves along with the oats.
Next I add the flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, herbs, cheese, and the butter, and pulse until the butter is thoroughly blended into the dry ingredients.
Then I pour in the milk and water and pulse until the batter is smooth and pourable. The amount of milk in the ingredient list above has been adjusted to accommodate the amount of dried herbs and cheese that I add when I make these crackers. If you omit the herbs and cheese, you will need to reduce the amount of milk to about 1/2 cup… the objective here is to make a batter that is easily pourable.
Pour a thin layer of the batter into greased baking pans (with sides) and tilt the pan until the bottom of the pan is evenly covered. The layer of batter will look very thin. The pans I use for these crackers are twelve inches square, and half of the batter from this recipe is just the right amount for this size pan.
Bake the crackers in a 350°F oven for about eight minutes or until the top of the crackers are firm. Remove the trays from the oven and use a knife or a pizza cutter to cut the crackers. I cut approximately two-inch squares to make 36 crackers in each 12-inch pan. Brush the tops with butter and return the trays to the oven to bake.
Bake another fifteen or twenty minutes longer until the crackers are baked through. This is the only part of the process that can get tricky because if the crackers have not baked long enough, they will not be crisp. Trial and error will show you how much time these crackers will need to bake completely in your oven.
Once the crackers are thoroughly baked, use a spatula to remove them from the pan and place on a rack to cool.
These crackers are extremely crisp and flavorful, and no one will ever guess how easy and quick they are to make. This is a new recipe for me, and so far I have only made the oregano, basil, cheese, and garlic combination… but I will also be making these crackers plain and with other herbs.