Versatile flatbread crackers baked fresh for cheese plates, salads and our celebration packages. I used to purchase flatbread crackers, but after coming across a recipe for something VERY similar, I now prepare and bake them pretty much to order. Four of these European Cheese Plates were ordered as appetizers the other night. They are a great starter with a lot of variety. Cheese choices vary based on availability, but this one had Brie, Irish White Cheddar, Smoked Gouda, Jarlsburg Swiss and Fontina. Delicious choice for any cheese lover!
The dough can be refrigerated for 2 days or frozen for up to a month, and then thawed for 2 hours at room temperature.
Yields about 3 ½ dozen 2×4 inch crackers
For the topping:
1 Tbs sesame seeds
2 tsp poppy seeds
2 tsp fennel or caraway seeds
¾ tsp salt – preferably kosher
1 egg beaten with 1 Tbs water
For the dough
1 ½ c unbleached all purpose flour; more for rolling
½ c whole-wheat flour
1 tsp table salt
3 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
½ c water
Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and heat the oven to 450°.
- In a small bowl, stir the sesame seeds, poppy seeds and fennel or caraway seeds. Crack the egg into another bowl, lightly beat and set aside, along with a pastry brush and the kosher salt.
- In a large bowl, whisk the all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour and table salt. Add the olive oil and ½ c water to the flour; still with a rubber spatula until ot collects into a soft, crumbly ball of dough. Use the spatula or your hands to press the dough against the sides of the bowl to gather all the stray flour.
- Set the dough on a lightly floured work surface and portion it into thirds. Pat each portion into a square. Set remaining dough into a rectangle about 1/16 “ thick and 7 or 8 inches wide by 14 or 15 “ long. Whenever you feel resistance, lift up on e edge of the dough and sprinkle more flour underneath before you continue rolling.
- Poke with a fork (or a dough perforator) to create air release holes. With a pastry brush, brush the dough lightly with the egg & water mixture and sprinkle about a third of the seed mix evenly over the surface. Sprinkle with ¼ tsp of the kosher salt, crumbling it between your fingers while sprinkling it. With a dough scraper, pizza cutter, ravioli cutter or sharp knife, cut the dough in half lengthwise and then cut across to make rectangles roughly 2×4 inches. Don’t bother trimming the edges; rustic edges add character. Transfer to an unlined baking sheet. Bake until nicely browned, about 10 mins.
- While each batch is baking, clean the work surface as needed and repeat rolling and cutting with the remaining portions of dough. Store the cooked crackers in a zip-top bag. They’ll keep for up to a week.
Variation: Rosemary and sea salt crackers: Add 2 TBS chopped fresh rosemary to the dry ingredients in the dough. Skip the seed topping and sprinkle each batch of crackers with ¼ tsp fine sea salt.