May 17, 2017

Cooking Cooking

Seeded Parmesan Crackers

Seeded Parmesan Crackers |

Compared to most people, I think our pantry is pretty bare. It’s filled with lots of different types of flours and grains, popcorn kernels for movie nights, different varieties of pastas and noodles, and over a dozen jars of honey picked up on our travels. There’s hot sauce and mustard, several different vinegars, dried apricots, and a few cans of whole tomatoes and some canned pumpkin left over from the holidays. I stock canned salmon and tuna for salads and sandwiches, and I do have a few boxes of organic oat and rice cereal for Theo’s sensory boxes, but other than that, I don’t keep a lot of packaged food in the pantry. 

Seeded Parmesan Crackers |

While I have gotten better at doing some bulk meal prep at the beginning of the week (making chicken stock/cooked chicken, roasting vegetables, washing greens) so that we have ready-to-eat food on hand for lunches and snacks, sometimes people look in our pantry and refrigerator and ask, “What do you eat?!”

The truth is, we just don’t eat a lot of packaged foods, and so I make almost everything from scratch. But that’s because I enjoy doing it; cooking is my meditation time, when I can just get lost in kneading dough or chopping vegetables, when my mind clears. Yoga doesn’t even do that for me. So, if you don’t enjoy cooking, there is no judgement in buying packaged foods, especially crackers. There are many great convenience products from the store.

But, if you’re like me, and cooking is your happy place (or you just want to try something new) here’s another recipe for you. 

Seeded Parmesan Crackers |

I first had these crackers at a friend’s house, and she shared the original recipe. I kept making them over and over again, modifying the recipe just a little bit each time, until they got to this: Seeded Parmesan Crackers. They have become our go-to snack for traveling or when we know we’re going to be stuck in long meetings without access to good food. They are primarily made from whole rolled oats and seeds, so they are a good source of whole grains (think: fiber) and protein. If you use gluten-free oats, they are a great snack or gift for friends that avoid wheat. And they are delicious. 

Although you have to plan ahead, they are easy to make.  Just soak the mixture overnight in the refrigerator and roll the crackers out and bake them in the morning. You can mix-and-match ingredients depending on what seeds you have on hand. I’ve even substituted crushed pecans or slivered almonds with good results. Sometimes I leave the pumpkin seeds out and then they are a little easier for Theo to eat. He likes to nibble on the crumbs.

Seeded Parmesan Crackers |

I hope you love them as much as we do.

Seeded Parmesan Crackers
Yields 24
  1. 1 cup pumpkin seeds
  2. 3/4 cup sunflower seeds
  3. 1/2 cup sesame seeds
  4. 1/4 cup chia seeds
  5. 1 ½ cups whole rolled oats
  6. 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  7. 1 ½ teaspoons sea salt
  8. 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  9. 3 tablespoons olive oil
  10. 1 1/4 cups water
  1. In a large bowl combine the seeds, oats, parmesan cheese and salt, stirring well. Whisk maple syrup, oil and water together in a measuring cup. Add this to the dry ingredients and mix very well until everything is completely combined. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator overnight, or for at least six hours.
  2. When you are ready to bake the crackers, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  3. Place two pieces of parchment paper, about the size of a baking sheet, on the kitchen counter. Divide the chilled dough in half and place one half in the center of one parchment paper and one half on the other. Cover with a similar size of parchment paper. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into a square shape, about 1/4 inch thick. Remove the top layer of parchment paper and discard. Take a knife and score the dough to make 12 crackers on each piece of parchment paper.
  4. Using the parchment paper, slide the paper with the dough onto two baking sheets and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and flip the whole cracker over (be bold!) and peel the baking paper off of the back (the cracker will now be resting right on the baking sheet). Return the cracker to the oven to bake for another 20 minutes, until fully dry, crisp, and dark-golden around the edges.
  5. Let the crackers cool completely, then break crackers along their scored lines and store in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.
  1. You can mix-and-match your nut/seed combination, as long as it adds up to about 2 1/2 cups. I've used slivered almonds, crushed pecans, flax seed and even more oats.
Adapted from My New Roots, Life Changing Crackers
Lisa Samuel

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