Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Spicy Cheese Crackers

cheese crackers

These crackers are delicious. Really, really good. Buttery, spicy, cheesy and not a bit sweet. I’m a bit burned out on sugar, to be honest. After all those Christmas cookies and that amazing cobbler, I needed to change it up a bit.

cheese crackers

I agree with Clotilde who said they are like cheese shortbread. Dry, crumbly, spicy shortbread. I’m sure you could make them look nicer than mine if you rolled the dough out and use a pretty cutter, but I hate rolling out dough, so I just made it into a log and cut slices.

yummy cheese crackers

These practically no time at all, especially if you do it in the food processor. I think they’d be perfect with soup, maybe Chili. Try them out!

cheese crackers

Cheese Crackers

Adapted from here and here

1 1/2 cups (about 6 ounces) grated extra-sharp Cheddar cheese

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick or 2 ounces) unsalted butter, softened and cut into 4 pieces

3/4 cup flour, plus more for dusting

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1 tablespoon half-and-half (I used cream, because it’s what I had)

Preheat oven to 350°F.
In a food processor, combine the cheese, butter, flour, salt, paprika and red pepper in five 5-second pulses until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add the half-and-half and process until the dough forms a ball, about 10 seconds. (you could also use a pastry blender and do it by hand)

Shape the dough into a log or whatever sliceable shape strikes your fancy, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm enough to be easily sliced, about an hour, and up to a day. (You can speed things up by placing the dough in the freezer for 20 minutes instead.)
Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
Remove the dough from the fridge, slice it thinly and arrange the slices on the prepared sheet (they will expand a little, so give them just a bit of elbow room). You will need to work in batches; return the dough to the fridge between batches.

Bake for 10 to 14 minutes, depending on your oven and the thickness of your slices, until golden. Let the cheese thins rest on the baking sheet for a minute before transferring them to a cooling rack.

78 comments:

  1. these look fabulous! I cannot waint to try them. thank your posting these mouth-watering photos and recipes!

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  2. I am with you all the way. Bring the cheese! Making these soon...

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  3. Yes, I think we're all a bit weary of the sugar rush. What a perfect companion for a wintry bowl of soup.

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  4. oh...i love those and they are wonderful with chili or soup. beautiful shots

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  5. Haha, looks like we had the same idea - the sun-dried tomato and cheddar crackers I made sound very similar - "like shortbread" is a good way to describe them.

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  6. Oh yum - what a pity its Summer in Australia at the moment... oh well, I have bookmarked your recipe to come back and make these as soon as it's soup weather!! :)

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  7. I kinda like how they look as they are! It has a charming, rustic look.

    Would pair brilliantly with a good bowl of chili on Thursday! (I hear Athens is getting snow brrr)

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  8. these look yummy. i am going to make these next week for company!

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  9. While you are burnt on sweets, I'm completely burnt on crackers (too many cheese plates!). Looks lovely, however, and I'll bookmark this for a later date as I really do love crackers.

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  10. I think we all are done with sugar, at least for a while; so welcome spicy cheese crackers!

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  11. simple and scrumptious--the ideal appetizer and snack. as usual, your pictures are stunning. :)

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  12. No matter what I cook for my friends, homemade crackers are hands down the MOST impressive thing to them...I should bake these the next time I have a dinner party, they'll flip out.

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  13. I have two cracker recipes sitting on my counter just begging me to make them. I love homemade crackers, so little time with such great reward.

    These look wonderful!

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  14. i made smitten kitchen's cheese straws this weekend and rolling it out was so time consuming, so i really like this idea of cutting slices off a log. i bet i could make an extra log and freeze it to have crackers at the ready! thanks!

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  15. I agree, these are beautiful as they are, and sound perfect for January - these days I'm craving strong flavours and spice.

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  16. These are intriguing indeed, especially the spice part.

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  17. I've been wanting to make these since I saw them on Clotilde's and Deb's sites. They look and sound delicious! I assume you add the paprika with the flour, etc.? I don't see it included in the directions.

    Love your blog. Your photos have such a luminous quality. xo, Dawn

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  18. Slice and bake cheese crackers?!? Oh yes please! They look lovely!

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  19. Buttery cheese crackers? Yes please! They sound simply perfect =D.

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  20. I'm so excited some of you have made these - they are so good!

    Dawn: Sorry about that! Yes, with the flour. I've added it to the recipe. :)

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  21. Yum! I think they look great the way they are :)

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  22. Yum... Your crackers look amazing. I love cheese crackers, and these look *much* better than anything that comes in a box.

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  23. just found your blog through decor8! hooray for another georgia girl (though i'm temporarily relocated to texas, heh) and your photography is spectacular. i can't wait to look through your delish recipes. :)

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  24. Oh my, I will have to try my hand at these! They look and sound delicious. And your photography is awesome, too!!

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  25. Love cheese crackers! Haven't had a decent recipe though, until now. Homemade is the only way to go with these. Nothing better with soup, for a snack, with appetizers.
    Copying.

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  26. Move over cheez-its! I don't know why anyone would buy readymade crackers when these are not too difficult to prepare! Your pictures are gorgeous and glowing!

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  27. Hannah! I'm obsessed!!
    Tonight I was thinking of White Cheddar Parmesan Garlic Dill Crackers. BUT, I want to put the dough in a pastry bag and then create little tiny cheesy doodles - I bet they'll bake in seconds and you can eat them by the handful!! Whatdya think??

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  28. This sounds like the perfect recipe to test this weekend. BTW, I'm absolutely loving your photography. Your blog is always such a wonderful place to visit. Happy 2010:)

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  29. I love homemade crackers and these look beautiful! I'm having a party tonight and just might need to make these for people to nibble on... Thanks for sharing such a great recipe and beautiful photos!

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  30. I always make recipes like this in my food processor although sometimes having the buttery dough in between my hands is truly satisfying. Happy New Year!

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  31. I made Clotilde's recipe in December. I thought they were amazing. The best part was that you can just keep the log in the fridge and bake them off as you need them, so I was able to serve fresh ones as part of an appetizer at a dinner party.

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  33. These are just my sort of snack. I have a bit of a "savoury" tooth if I may call it that.
    And your pictures are just great.

    Happy New Year too.

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  34. love your pictures! they are warm and show the food very well... i believe photographing food is extremely hard because it has to look yummy!!!

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  35. made these also~ and linked! and LOVED! (made a batch with out spice but added rosemary from the garden... mmmm)

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