When the going gets tough, the though stay home on a Friday night and make crackers. Or something.
This week, work has been a bit difficult – just in terms of unpredictability and the additions that brought to my To Do list, rather than anything especially terrible. My upstairs neighbour seems to have a new partner and they are enjoying throwing each other onto the bed with full force at regular intervals throughout the night, while my downstairs neighbours have rediscovered their love of thumping dubstep at any and all hours of the day. So, I’ve been a bit tired and it’s been a week of mostly having coco pops for tea.
So it’s a quick update this week – these fiery wee chilli crackers, which are simple and for a small amount of ingredients yield a massive amount. They are also still quite delicious even if you burn them a little bit since you nodded off during the cooking time. I’m quite glad to have them on this blog because, despite it’s other endless virtues, the internet is not a good resource for cracker recipes.
Crackers are one of those things it maybe seems a faff to make yourself, but a) a chilled dough needs a good hammering, which is good after a stressful week and b) they are customisable and so can be adapted to whatever you want. This recipe is adapted from the fennel seed thins in Richard Burr’s BIY (actually a super handy cookbook), essentially with slightly less stuff and, y’know, chilli. Eat with a mild, creamy cheese or stuff them into your mouth in much the same way one might with crisps.
- 250g plain flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper (or, a lot more, if you are a fiend for this)
- 1 - 1 1/2 tsps dried chilli flakes (I used the latter, they were spicy - adjust to your taste)
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 60g unsalted butter, chilled
- Some extra sea salt flakes
- Combine flour, baking powder, salt, pepper, chilli flakes and parika in a bowl.
- Cut the butter into small cubes and pop in the bowl. Rub the butter into the spices and flour until the mix resembles breadcrumbs.
- Add in 100ml of cold water, get your hands in and bring together to a smooth dough. Don't overmix or knead.
- Wrap in clingfilm and place in the fridge for 20 mins (or up to 4 days).
- Cut the dough in half. Between two sheets of baking parchment, roll out on half of the dough until it is only about 1mm thick.
- Cut out small biscuits using the cookie cutter of your choice, then place the cut crackers on a lined baking sheet. Using a fork or similar pointy thing, stab the crackers all over to create small holes. Place the cut crackers in the fridge for 20 minutes.
- Preheat over to 170°C.
- Remove crackers from fridge, place in oven for 18 - 20 minutes, or until a light brown (do not use my pics as a guide because they are a bit over). Once cooked, transfer to a wire rack to cool. I also sprinkled some extra sea salt flakes over them t this point.
- Repeat steps 5 onwards for the other half of the dough.