Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Cheese and Crackers

Mrs. Mordecai asked yesterday about the homemade cheese spread that I had mentioned in my post about our picnic lunch. This was a new experiment type of thing for me, and I think it's turned out to be a very tasty success. I used this recipe for a cheese ball from tammysrecipes.com, but instead of making it into a ball, I packed it into a jar for easy storage. I also left out the beef stuff, because I didn't have any, and honestly, I'm not even sure what it is.

This is what it looks like in the jar. I didn't add any milk because I didn't want it to spoil too easily, so it is a bit stiff to spread. I'm thinking that a touch of olive oil might improve that. It's much less expensive than those little tubs of spread in the store, and though it's not exactly health food, I'm sure it's healthier than that processed stuff.
BUT.... We liked our cheese spread so much, the last of the ritz crackers got eaten last night. (No, we didn't eat a whole box in two days, it was just a row and a half... not that I couldn't eat a whole box of ritz. I just like to think I wouldn't.) Anyway, I decided to try my hand at cracker making and see if I couldn't come up with something a bit healthier than ritz to go with my spread.

I found this recipe that lots of people had used in a challenge, and they all liked it so it seemed worth trying. Since I was going for healthy, I mixed three flours, bread flour (for the gluten), whole wheat pastry flour, and cornmeal.

The dough came out pretty well and was fairly easy to work with.
I'm the most uneven cutter ever.

It was a challenge to pick it up and get it on the parchment paper lined pan after rolling it so thin. That was the hardest part. I tried just rolling it out on the parchment paper, but it slid everywhere, and pulled the paper into wrinkles under it when it would shrink back during the rolling.
I tried two different shapes. I think the little triangles would be good with dips, but the squares are better for spreads. I didn't think this recipe needed the extra salt sprinkled on it at all, but it could use some garlic. I'm thinking garlic and parmasean next time.

They're pretty good, but the flavor comes from the spread or dip more than the cracker. It's an okay flavor and a really good crunchy grainy texture. I think they'd be great with hommus or guacamole. I'll have to get busy and make a dip sometime soon as well.
But for now, the cheese spread is just excellent.

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Josie said...

wow these look great!!

Bethany said...

Thanks. We've been enjoying them!

Mrs. Mordecai said...

Thanks so much for sharing your idea with me. Mr. Mordecai will be in heaven when I make this!

Bethany said...

My Ben loved this spread. I'm sure Mr. Mordecai will too!

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