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Cheddar Cheese Crackers with Red Pepper Salsa

Cheddar Cheese Crackers with Red Pepper Salsa

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If you’ve never made crackers before, you should definitely give this recipe a try. With only five ingredients, it’s a whole lot simpler than you might think, and the results are truly outstanding. I paired the crackers with a refreshing red pepper salsa because the sweetness of the dip really complements the saltiness of the crackers.


If you have patience, this is actually a great activity to do with kids. It’s a bit time-consuming, but essentially a pretty simple recipe to follow. And it’s great for kids to learn that all kinds of foods can be homemade.

Gather your ingredients. You’ll need a block of cheddar and some cold butter, as well as flour, water and salt. Grate the cheese and cut the butter into pieces. If you have a dairy food processor, throw all the ingredients in there and pulse until it comes together to form a smooth dough.


I prefer to keep my food processor pareve, so I mixed the dough by hand. First work the butter into the cheese, slowly adding flour, water and salt as the mixture comes together. The warmth of your hands should help the butter soften and combine with the other ingredients.


When the dough forms a smooth ball, it’s ready. Stick it in the fridge for an hour.


Preheat the oven to 350°F and prepare to roll the dough. I like to roll it between two pieces of parchment paper so I don’t have to worry about the dough sticking to the rolling pin. Tear off two pieces of parchment paper, the same size. Cut the dough into four pieces, and stick one piece between the parchment papers. Use the rolling pin to roll it as thin as you can.


Using a small, round cookie cutter, cut as many circles as you can from the dough. Gently pick them up and place them on a baking pan. Repeat until all the dough has been rolled and all the crackers are ready for baking.


Bake for 20–25 minutes, until they are golden or lightly browned. Baking time will vary slightly depending on how thick your crackers are. Let the crackers cool and they are ready to eat. Yum!


To make the salsa, dice the peppers and onion.


Transfer the vegetables to the bowl of a food processor, and process 10–15 seconds—but make sure not to puree them!


Put all the ingredients in a pot and bring to a boil. Make sure to stir it occasionally to avoid burning the sugar. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 1–2 hours. Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to two weeks.


Now invite some friends over (or don’t, if you prefer not to share!) and have a dipping feast. This recipe makes about 4 cups salsa and about 100 crackers.

And while they can’t be called healthy by any stretch of the imagination, at least these crackers don’t have all the chemicals found in store-bought ones.


Cracker Ingredients:

  • 8 oz. cheddar cheese
  • 4 tbsp. cold butter
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1½ tbsp. water
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt

Cracker Directions:

  1. Grate the cheddar.
  2. Cut the butter into squares.
  3. If you have a dairy food processor, stick all the ingredients in there and pulse until combined.
  4. If you’re doing it by hand (like I did), start by working the butter and cheese together. The heat of your hands should help the butter mix.
  5. Add in the flour, a bit at a time, along with the water.
  6. Keep working the dough until you have a nice, smooth ball.
  7. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
  8. Roll the dough as thin as possible, cut circles, and place on a greased pan.
  9. Bake at 350°F for 20–25 minutes for crispy crackers, 15–20 if you prefer them slightly soft.

Salsa Ingredients:

  • 5 red peppers
  • 1 onion
  • 1 cup vinegar
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp. kosher salt

Salsa Directions:

  1. Dice peppers and onion.
  2. Put them in the bowl of your food processor and pulse for a few seconds. Do not puree them.
  3. Pour all ingredients into a strong pot and bring to a boil. Stir occasionally to make sure the sugar doesn’t burn.
  4. Reduce to a simmer and cook 1–2 hours.
  5. Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to two weeks.

Yields: 100 crackers, 4 cups salsa


Have you ever made crackers before? How would you compare them to store-bought?

Miriam Szokovski is the author of historical novel Exiled Down Under, and a member of the Chabad.org editorial team. She enjoys tinkering with recipes, and teaches cooking classes to young children. Miriam shares her love of cooking, baking and food photography on Chabad.org’s food blog, Cook It Kosher and in the N'shei Chabad Newsletter.
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Discussion (13)
April 22, 2014
Gluten Free varieties
This passover i tried to make a gluten free pizza cracker with milled pumpkin seeds as a base; adding olives, tomatoes, green peppers, garlic & spices & throwing all into a blender to mix together.

Well the benefits were as follows: (negotiably kosher for passover as some do not eat seeds), the taste was good - though perhaps adding psyillium husk or soaked chia seeds would have made the finished cracker hold together better; but the real benefit was having the house smell like pizza baking - so the kids were excited about trying it. wasn't a total flop, though, as can be eaten with cream cheese or sprinkled on a salad like another cob salad addition - instead of sweet cranberries, a savory treat for mom!!
Bessie
July 15, 2013
Wow!
Your recipes look great!
Anonymous
Brooklyn
July 15, 2013
Thanks, Sandy
Hi Sandy,

I'm so glad you've discovered my blog. Cooking is such fun for kids - your grandchildren are lucky to have you!
Miriam Szokovski
July 13, 2013
I am excited
I have just found your cooking section and love your recipes. Thank you very very much for sharing these simple exciting recipes with us. I have many grandchildren who come to us every shabbas. Now I can show them how to make these recipes and we can eat them together. I feel grateful to you for bringing another dimension into my life.
Sandy
San Diego, Ca
chabadofwilmington.org
July 9, 2013
food processor
Hi Eshter,

I keep my food processor pareve, but if you use your for meat, then yes, you shouldn't use it for this.
Miriam Szokovski
July 9, 2013
looks delicious! but
if we process the onions in a fleishig food proccessor, i don't think we're allowed to eat with the crackers.
eshter
earth
June 23, 2013
grateful
Miriam, I find your instructions very simple to follow because of how well you write and also the step by step photos help a lot

we tried this with the kids and it was a big success

and you're right, it was eye opening to them to realize that even crackers have to be made by SOMEONE! they're not born in a box

thank you
Rishe
BROOKLYN
June 12, 2013
Thanks!
Might be awhile before I try it but when I do I think I'll try it with whole wheat flour and parve cheese.
Sarah Rivka :)
Cincinnati, OH
June 12, 2013
whole wheat and pareve cheese
Sara Rivkah - I've never used pareve cheese and I'm not sure how it works. If you try it, let us know how it comes out.

Mushky - I'm sure you can use whole wheat flour. You might need slightly less flour though.
Miriam Szokovski
June 12, 2013
Parve cheese?
I'm lactose intolerant but I love cheese....Can you make these with parve cheese, do you think?
Sarah Rivka :)
Cincinnati, OH
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