Is it a big box of fish? Cat food? A chicken for Pi?
Awwww, poor Pi. It’s a bunch of whole wheat flours and grains I got from Hodgson Mill. Been waiting for these to make some recipes from my new cook book Peter Reinhart’s Whole Grain Breads. D gave it to me for Valentine’s Day, and I’ve been fidgeting to make something.
The recipes are very long and can be a bit complicated at first. A lot of it reads like a chemistry text book, which I love but it ain’t for the totally new to baking people. He teaches some new techniques, and I love learning them. The first thing I tried I wanted to be on the simpler side, and I was feeling inspired by Bread Baking Day #7 – Flatbreads which led me to try to make crackers! Thin Wheat Crackers.
As always, this tiny little bit of counter is where I do all of my cooking. There’s something I really like about how everything fits in front of the book.
At first I was worried that I wasn’t gonna be able to tell which one I’d added rye flour too. This was a very silly worry. Y’all can tell right?
Ain’t they cute, all nestled under their blankie?
Taken out in my tiny garden, the arugula and lettuce seedlings are in the back waving at the camera.
Thin Wheat Crackers
1 c. Whole Wheat Flour (you can mix in other grains, try to keep the ratio about 65% to 70% whole wheat flour and 30% to 35% other flours)
1/2 tsp. salt
6 tbls. Milk, Buttermilk, Yogurt, Soy Milk, or Rice Milk
1 1/2 tbls. Honey or Agave Nectar or 2 tbls. Sugar or Brown Sugar
4 tbls. Vegetable Oil or Light Olive Oil
Extra Whole Wheat Flour for adjustments
1 tbls. Kosher Salt or Sea Salt dissolved in 1/2 c. water for salt water wash
Combine the 1 c. flour and the salt, milk, honey, and oil in a bowl and mix until the ingredients come together to form a ball of dough. Ass extra flour or milk as needed to make a firm but tacky dough.
Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead for 3 minutes, adjusting the flour or liquid as needed; the dough should feel like modeling clay and have a satiny surface. It should not be soft and sticky or crumbly.
If baking the crackers immediately, preheat the oven to 350 F. Cover the dough with a cloth towel or plastic wrap and let rest for 20 minutes, then move on to the next step. If holding the dough overnight form it into a ball, place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and leave at room temperature overnight.
When you are ready to bake the crackers, prepare a sheet pan by lining it with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Mist the work surface lightly with pan spray or wipe it with just a touch of oil on a paper towel. This makes it easier to lift the dough later. Transfer the dough to the work surface and, working from the center of the dough out to the four corners, roll it out into a rectangle, dusting the top of the dough with flour only if needed to prevent sticking. Roll the dough out as thinly as it will allow, about 1/4 inch. If the dough begins to spring back, let it rest for a few minutes, then continue rolling until the rectangle is about 1/8 inch thick. Brush the top of the dough with the salt water wash.
Use a pizza roller or a pastry scraper to cut the dough into whatever sizes and shapes you desire (small rectangles are suggested). Use the pastry scraper or a metal spatula to transfer the individual crackers to the prepared sheet pan. They should not touch, but they can be close together. Bake for 10 minutes, then rotate the pan 180 degrees and continue baking about 10 minutes longer, until the crackers begin to turn a rich brown on both the top and the underside.
Let the crackers cool on the pan before serving. They will crisp up as they cool.