21 Aug 2012
Yep. Wheat Thins without the wheat. No one will ever know. Heck, they might just think you even bought these little beauties from the store.
These super-thin, crispy crackers taste just like the Wheat Thins I remember from my childhood. They might seem intimidating but they’re simple to make. Trust me.
The first time I made crackers I was in pastry arts school. Chef Lois brought in one of her favorite cookbooks, The Bread Baker’s Apprentice, and we whipped up some lavash crackers. Instead of rolling the dough out by hand, we used a bakery-grade sheeter to get the dough extra-thin.
The gluten-filled dough was easy to work with. Even when it was almost thin enough to see through, you could fold it, move it from one table to another and it wouldn’t fall apart.
Working with gluten-free dough is a little different. You can do it. It just takes a little finesse.
When you’re in the kitchen with your cracker dough, rolling pin, and gluten-free flour there are some things you can do to make sure your crackers are just as perfect as the ones that come that come out of a box:
– Give the dough time to chill and the liquid to thoroughly soften all the ingredients.
– Flour the dough lightly with brown rice flour.
– Roll the dough out between two sheets of parchment paper.
– Bake the crackers on the back of a floured baking sheet.Yes, the back! When you’re done rolling the crackers out, pull the top sheet of parchment off. Set the baking sheet on top of the dough, flip it over, and remove the remaining sheet of parchment. Cut the dough into squares, then pop them in the oven.
– Use a ruler to measure and guide your pizza wheel as you cut.
– Watch your crackers carefully while in the oven. They can go from not-quite-done to over-baked very quickly.
Once you make these crackers according to the recipe and have them exactly as you want, add your favorite herbs and spices. These would be great with rosemary and garlic, sun-dried tomatoes and basil, black sesame seeds and garlic, or even some parmesan cheese.
If you need to make this recipe dairy-free, I suggest using a non-hydrogenated shortening like Spectrum. Though I love coconut oil, it has a much lower melting point than butter and would need some tweaking to get the same results.
Wheat-less Wheat Thins
makes 5 – 6 dozen crackers
3/4 cup King Arthur Brown Rice Flour, plus more for rolling out the dough
1/4 cup tapioca starch
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon xanthum gum
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled and diced
1/4 cup water
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
salt for topping (optional)
Put the Erewhon Gluten-Free Crispy Brown Rice cereal in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process until finely ground. Add the brown rice flour, tapioca starch, sea salt, paprika, and xanthum gum. Pulse until combined.
Spread the diced butter around the flour and pulse until the butter has worked into the flour mixture and is the consistency of small peas.
Mix together the water and vanilla. Add to the flour and butter mixture and pulse until combined. Dough will be wetter than a pie crust.
Wrap in waxed paper and chill for at least one hour.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Divide the dough into 4 sections. Flour each section before rolling out between two pieces of parchment paper. Roll to 1/8 inch to 1/16 inch thick. When desired thickness is reached, peel off the top layer of parchment paper, lightly flour the dough again, and
set a baking sheet on top of the dough. The back of the baking sheet should be against the dough. Flip the sheet and the dough over, then peel off the remaining piece of parchment paper.
Use a ruler and pizza wheel to cut the dough into 1 1/2 inch squares. Bake for 5 – 8 minutes. Let cool completely on the baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
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