Today feels like a comfort food kind of a day, sometimes it’s the only way to alleviate that Sunday fug and when I think of comfort food, I think of cheese (and mashed potato, but that would make a pretty poor blog post). Thankfully I already had all of the ingredients necessary to make some absolutely marvellous cheese crackers, so I didn’t have to drag myself to the shops.
These crackers are puffed, flakey and intensely cheesy and would be utterly brilliant at a cocktail party or with a cheeky vino on a Friday night. Alternatively just wolf them whilst slobbing out on the sofa in front of cooking show after cooking show on the Food Network. Sounds good to me.
They’re predominantly made out of mature cheddar cheese and very little else, which is undoubtably what makes them so completely gorgeous. Joy the Baker’s original recipe makes 70 crackers, which would be much too dangerous in this household, so I’ve halved the recipe. I also decided to sub the spices for thyme, as the gorgeousness of cheddar combined with thyme can’t be beat, and the smell when they’re cooking, oh my word, hold me back!
Due to a lack of small round cutters, (I only have awesomely crazy shaped ones that Santa (aka Mum) put in my stocking one Christmas) I decided to cut my dough into simple, if a tad messy, squares. This also saves on having to reform the dough and go again after you’ve cut the first lot of rounds. The tiny amount of trimmings made a marvellous cheese straw as a chef’s perk!
I beg you, next time you’ve got people coming round for drinks and nibbles whip up a batch of these, your popularity increase by miles, at least mine did with the man of the house!
Cheddar & Thyme Crackers
Adapted from Joy the Baker
Makes about 35
30 g unsalted butter at room temperature
115 g mature cheddar, grated
Freshly ground salt and pepper
1/2 tsp dried thyme
65 g plain flour
1 tbsp cold water
In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment (or using an electric hand whisk) mix together the butter, cheese, a good grinding of salt and pepper and the dried thyme until well combined. With the mixer on low, slowly add the flour until a crumb is formed. Next add 1 tbsp cold water and mix until you have a ball of dough. Wrap it in cling film and pop it in the fridge for half an hour.
In the meantime, preheat the oven to 190C / 180C Fan / 375F and line a baking sheet with baking paper.
Roll out the dough on a floured work surface until it’s only a few millimetres thick, then cut out the biscuits, into rounds or squares, prick them with a fork and spread them on the baking sheet. They don’t have to be that spaced out, as they’ll puff up but not spread much.
Pop the baking sheet into the oven for about 12 – 15 mins until the crackers are puffy and golden. Cool them on a rack and crack open the vino!