For A Little Crunch - Puffy Cheese Crackers

I don't eat a lot of crackers (the last time I made this recipe was May, and I just ran out), but sometimes it's nice to have a savory crunchy little platform for spreadable cheese and meats. Lately, I've been particularly fond of having a thick slice of liver sausage on crackers after my bike rides.

This recipe is based on Roben Ryberg's cracker recipe from You Won't Believe It's Gluten-Free. A lot of her recipes rely upon corn or potato starch, and thus, aren't nutritional giants. But for occasional gluten-free baked treats, I've found her recipes, more often than most, work and taste closest to the real thing.

These crackers puff up really well, and are light and crunchy, without being crumbly. I haven't tried it yet, but I think this dough has enormous potential as a savory crust or tart shell.

Gluten-free Cheese Crackers

4 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded
4 Tbsp. butter, softened
¾ c. cornstarch*
¼ tsp. salt
2 Tbsp. (+) milk
¼ tsp. xanthan gum
½ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. garlic powder (optional)
1/8 tsp. cayenne powder (optional)

Use a food processor or pastry cutter to combine all ingredients, except milk, until the mixture looks like wet sand. Add milk, a tablespoonful at a time, until dough just starts to pull together into a ball (like making pie crust). The recipe calls for 2 Tbsp. of milk, but I ended up adding 5 before it looked like the dough would hold together.

On a lightly greased surface (I taped a piece of butcher paper to my counter, then brushed it with olive oil), roll dough to 1/8". Use a pizza cutter to cut dough into squares. Loosen squares from surface with a thin spatula, and transfer to a baking sheet. Re-roll "edges" and incomplete squares, and cut again, until all dough is used. Prick tops of crackers with a fork, and bake at 400 degrees (F) for 8-10 minutes, or until lightly golden.

To make sure the crackers were completely dried out, I waited until the oven cooled part way, and then put the crackers back in it overnight while it slowly finished cooling.

*Use organic cornstarch, if possible, to avoid GMO corn.


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