I used to make crackers using a recipe from a well known recipe book for babies and toddlers. Leif and I both thought they were pretty tasty and the whole process was easy. Over time I guess I forgot about them and we slowly started buying our crackers again. I justified it by buying the organic ones, but have recently slipped into buying the regular generic boxes at the grocery store. I realize that in the great scheme of things, eating a few preservatives is no big deal BUT I do feel good knowing that I have the ability to make something better for my family when I choose to.
So I got inspired, looked for another cracker recipe and found this post from May 2008 Los Angeles Times. The article, titled, Crackers? They're a snap! includes lots of helpful tips and a few recipes for different types of crackers. I chose the basic "thin wheat" cracker, the author's answer to the classic Nabisco Wheat Thin. I'm saving the "4-seed snappers" for my other kitchen which is better equipped to chop seeds than this one.
The recipe begins with a simple and sticky dough that's quick and easy to put together.
Next you knead the dough with lots of flour, roll it very thin and brush it with an egg wash before slicing or cutting it into cracker shapes. I went with small squares, but I'd recommend going bigger as mine took some time to transfer. The egg wash makes the crackers sticky and difficult to work with but they're crispier and glossier with it than without.
The end result was a huge batch of tasty crackers with a nutty flavor and a good crunch. I can imagine making several variations in the future - cinnamon and sugar, parmesan cheese and sesame seeds would all be great dusted on top before baking.
My only addition to the recipe's instructions might be to poke each cracker with a fork before baking to minimize the pillow puff that occurred in some of my later batches. I can't say that I'll make these crackers every week (that egg wash really made them a pain to cut and transfer) but the recipe is definitely worth adding to the rotation.
On a side note, I walked into my 300 degree pan and gave myself my first pregnant belly burn while making these. My mom had done the same thing decades ago when she was pregnant with one of us and to this day she talks about how she soothed the burn with a cut raw potato (slice the potato and press the fleshy part onto the burn as soon as possible and for as long as possible). Well, I tried it and must say that it works - it's a little pink, but no blisters or soreness. Thanks, Mom!