Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Homemade Graham Crackers

A few weeks ago my next door neighborhood said she made homemade graham crackers.  Being a big baker person myself, I said, "hey I could easily do that" and I needed a new challenge in the kitchen.  I went online and googled graham cracker recipes and finally found one at Smitten Kitchen that looked good.

I made my first batch of graham crackers on a Thursday and then made another batch on a Monday because they were all gone.  I can't tell who how many crackers each batch should make as I experimented with different level of thickness and sizes to see which I like best and also which would be the easiest way to feed snacks to my son.  Each batch does make plenty though.

Graham Crackers


2 1/8 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup light brown sugar plus 2 tbsp molassses or 1 cup dark brown sugar
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), cut into 1-inch cubes and frozen
1/3 cup honey
5 tbsp whole milk
2 tbsp vanilla extract

3 tbsp sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon

Make the dough:
Combine the flour, brown sugar (and molasses), baking soda, and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Pulse to incorporate. Add the butter and pulse on and off on and off until the butter is incorporated.

In a small bowl, whisk together the honey, milk, and vanilla extract. Add to the flour mixture and pulse on and off a few times until the dough barely comes together. It will be very soft and sticky.
Lay out a large piece of plastic wrap and dust it lightly with flour, then turn the dough out onto it and pat it down until it is 1-inch thick. Wrap it, then chill it until firm, about 2 hours or overnight.
While the dough is chilling, prepare the topping, by combining the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl and setting aside. 

Roll out the crackers:
Break off a chunk of the dough and return the rest to the refrigerator. Sprinkle flour onto the work surface and roll the dough into a long rectangle about 1/8 inch thick. The dough will be sticky, so flour as necessary. Trim the edges to make an even rectangle using a pizza cutter or pastry wheel. Cut the dough to make 4 1/2 inch rectangles or 2 inch squares or whichever size you prefer.  I made some squares, some sticks and some using mini cookie cutters and some with regular cookie cutters.
Place the crackers on  parchment-lined baking sheets and sprinkle with the topping. Chill until firm, about 30 to 45 minutes in the fridge or 15 to 20 minutes in the freezer. Repeat with a second batch of dough. Finally, gather any scraps together into a ball, chill until firm, and re-roll and keep repeating until all the dough is cut out.  Make sure to refrigerate the dough in between uses.
Adjust the oven rack to the upper and lower positions and preheat the oven to 350°F.

Decorate the crackers: 
Mark a vertical line down the middle of each cracker, being careful not to cut through the dough (again, this is for the traditional cracker shape). Using a toothpick or skewer, prick the dough to form two dotted rows about 1/2 inch for each side of the dividing line. You can also leave the crackers undecorated.
Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until browned and slightly firm to the touch, rotating the sheets halfway through to ensure even baking. I found I only need 10 minutes to bake my crackers but more time might be needed.  If you use cookie cutters, watch the crackers carefully as they might need less time.

1 comment:

  1. Those look awesome. I'll have to try the recipe out sometime.