Cheesy Cheddar crisps
Hands-on Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes (includes cooling time)
Makes: 4 dozen crackers or 8 dozen sticks
There are two ways to prepare these savory treats. The two versions are equally tasty, and both look merry presented in glass jars decorated with red ribbon.
by Amy Kaldor-Bull, Kathy Farrell-Kingsley, and Virginia Willis | Photograph by Bill Milne
What you'll need
2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
pinch of cayenne pepper
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
* Use an offset spatula for easier handling.
How to make it
In a food processor, combine all the ingredients until the dough is soft and pliable, with a claylike consistency, 45 to 60 seconds.
Transfer the dough to a clean, lightly floured work surface. Lightly flour your hands and shape the dough into two 1 1/2- by 8-inch logs. Wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and chill until firm, about 1 hour.
Position your oven racks at the top and bottom thirds of the oven. Heat the oven to 350° and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
For the crackers (bottom): Using a sharp, lightly floured knife, cut the logs of dough into 1/4-inch slices and place them an inch apart on the prepared baking sheets.
Bake the crackers, rotating the sheets once, until they are lightly browned on the edges, about 20 minutes. Set the baking sheets on a wire rack to cool slightly, then transfer the crackers to the rack to cool completely*.
For the sticks (top): Using a sharp, lightly floured knife, cut each log in half crosswise, then lengthwise, creating four 4-inch-long pieces. Roll each piece into a 12-inch-long rope with your hands (if the rope breaks, just pinch it back together). Cut each rope into 1 1/2-inch sticks and place them an inch apart on the prepared baking sheets. Using the tines of a lightly floured fork, gently press on the sticks to indent the dough.
Bake the sticks, rotating the baking sheets once, until they are lightly browned on the edges, about 15 minutes. Set the baking sheets on a wire rack to cool slightly, then transfer the sticks to the rack to cool completely*.
Per serving (1 cracker or 2 sticks) Calories 48, Total Fat 4 g (5%), Saturated Fat 2 g (9%), Cholesterol 9 mg (3%), Sodium 55 mg (2%), Total Carbohydrate 3 g (1%), Fiber 0 g (0%), Sugars 0 g, Protein 1 g (3%)