Sourdough whole-wheat cheese crackers
Prep Time: 20 minutes total + resting in the refrigerator
Cook Time: 20-25 minutes
Keywords: bake bread nut-free soy-free sugar-free vegetarian flour cheese
Ingredients (18-20 crackers)
- 4 ounces / 113 g sourdough starter (see Note below on starter feeding)
- 2 ounces / 56 g whole-wheat flour (I use 1 ounce / 28 g Chiddam Blanc de Mars from Capay Mills and 1 ounce / 28 g hard red wheat from Beck's Bakery both stone-ground)
- 1 tablespoon / 1/2 ounce unsalted butter at room temperature
- 1 tablespoon / 15 ml extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/2-1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh herbs of your choice, optional but nice (I use rosemary)
- 1 ounce / 28 g sharp cheese of your choice, freshly grated
- olive oil for brushing
- coarse sea salt for sprinkling on the surface
Note: For regular feeding, I stir well 2 tablespoons of sourdough starter + 1/4 cup of water + 1/3 cup of King Arthur Flour all-purpose flour, cover the (recycled yogurt) container and place it on top of the refrigerator. I repeat this morning and evening during the days in which the starter is not in the refrigerator. When I make the crackers, I take the amount of starter needed and use the rest in the preceding formula.
In a bowl, weigh the sourdough starter, whole-wheat flours, butter and olive oil, and stir to make a dough. Sprinkle sea salt and herbs (if using) and let stand for 5-10 minutes. Stir salt and herbs into the mix, transfer on your working surface and knead until you have a smooth, slightly tacky dough. (To make this step easier, I lightly oil my kneading board and wet my hands.)
Shape the dough into a thick rectangle, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes to a couple of hours.
When ready to shape and bake the crackers, preheat the oven to 350 F / 177 C.
Lightly flour the surface of the dough and roll it into a long rectangle. Distribute the grated cheese over one half of the rectangle then fold the other half over the cheese.
Lightly flour a piece of parchment paper and transfer the folded dough onto it. Roll the dough to a thickness of about 1/16 inch / 1.5 mm. Transfer the dough and parchment paper together onto a baking sheet. Lightly brush the surface of the dough with olive oil and sprinkle a bit of salt on top. Cut the dough into squares (a pizza cutter wheel works well for this task). Don't worry if the cut doesn't go all the way through: a deep score is good enough. Prick the surface with the tines of a fork.
Place the baking sheet in the oven and bake the crackers for 20 to 25 minutes, until they brown around the edges, or a bit more (the thinner pieces will brown almost fully). After 12 minutes, turn the baking sheet front to back to help the crackers bake more evenly.
Take the baking sheet out the oven and transfer the crackers to a cooling rack. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week.