A few days ago, we ran out of crackers.
It was a cool rainy day building up to snow and we were out of crackers for the third time in a week. The girls were in a particularly nasty rainy day mood and I desperately needed something to keep them occupied. So, we made crackers.
The idea of making my own crackers has been floating around in my head for a few years now. Ever since the day my step-mom and I brought this cookbook home from the thrift store. I love collaborated cookbooks and this is one of the best I’ve ever owned. If I’m going to use a cookbook, this is almost always the one I turn to.
Well, in this cookbook is a recipe that caught my eye the very first time I thumbed through it-REBECCA BOONE’S HOMEMADE CRACKERS. Such a grand sounding recipe, in a very rustic backwoodsy sort of way. I can just imagine Rebecca Boone standing over a rough plank table wearing a calico dress and apron, sleeves pushed up to the elbows, rolling out crackers. What an industrious woman!
So, I made crackers with the girls. The reality was diaristicly different from my day dream.
The ingredients were all simple and items I keep on hand. The process it self was easy as well. What was not straightforward was Dark Moon. She was swinging wildly from sweet and helpful to ornery and destructive. It was too late for a nap and too early for bed, so I just had to bite the bullet and go with it.
I measured out the ingredients and let the girls combine them in a bowl. Then I worked the dough by hand. It was a bit stiffer than I expected. Since this is was my experience with crackers, I just decided to go with it. I took a little taste and it was pretty tasty, so I proceeded to roll it into a sheet on the table.
Here is where I decided (between fighting with Dark Moon over rather she should be allowed to eat copious amounts of raw dough) that I had made a mistake. I absolutely could not roll the dough thin enough to make a proper cracker. Once again, I just keep on truckin’ and did what I could before taking a cookie cutter to the dough sheet.
Miss Busy did a great job poking holes in our pine tree shaped crackers. The recipe said to bake them on a greased cookie sheet, but I was all out of cooking spray (add that to my shopping list with “crackers”) and used parchment instead. It worked just fine.
By this point I was feeling stressed, so I spun some Elton John for the good vibes. The girls and I danced in the living room while our crackers baked.
They turned out quite pretty little crackers, but not quite as cracker-ish as I would have liked. Warm they were like small chewy biscuits with crunchy edges (not complaints here), but cold they were like munching on stones. Overall, they ended up reminding me of the hardtack experiment I did a few years ago.
I really want this recipe to work, so I will probably give it another go (with out my assistants) and pay careful attention to my wet/dry ratio. With all the cooks involved, the somewhat disappointing results probably had more to do with us than the recipe.