Don't be dissuaded by what might be a less-than-inviting title... I am just lacking in creativity after getting up early this morning! I went on a bit of a baking binge last night and finally tried this recipe for whole wheat goldfish crackers from Smitten Kitchen that I have been ogling since it was posted. I love Pepperidge Farm Goldfish® crackers but I don't love that I know they are not particularly healthy (despite what the Pepperidge Farm website might say). Delicious? Absolutely. Wholesome? Debatable.
What never occurred to me was to try to make these at home! These are made with predominantly whole wheat flour and sharp cheddar and they are incredibly tasty and addictive. After baking them last night, I packed the crackers into portion-sized tupperware containers, which is great going forward to limit consumption, but never mind that I ate at least 10 while packing up the crackers! If you look at the Smitten Kitchen post, you'll see that she has an adorable fish cookie cutter. Unfortunately, I do not, but I do have a star that worked just fine. Now if you'll excuse me, it is time to eat today's ration of cheddar crackers. Good-bye.
Whole Wheat Cheddar Crackers
(adapted from Smitten Kitchen)
Yield: About 60 1 1/4 inch stars
6 ounces (1 1/2 cups coarsely grated) sharp cheddar
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon table salt (depending on your desired saltiness)
1/8 cup low-fat buttermilk (if needed)
Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine all ingredients except the buttermilk and 1 tablespoon of butter in a food processor, running the machine until the dough forms a ball, about two minutes. If the dough has not formed a ball and still seems very un-dough-like, add small amounts of the buttermilk and/or the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter until the dough comes together. I needed the 1/8 cup of buttermilk and the extra 1 tablespoon of butter to get my dough to form a ball.
Wrap the dough in waxed paper or plastic wrap and chill it in the fridge for 30 to 45 minutes. This makes it easier to transfer shapes once they are rolled out and helps the dough allows the gluten to relax and prevents spreading of the cookies. Read more about why you chill dough here.
On a lightly floured surface, using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the dough out 1/8-inch thick. Form shapes with a cookie cutter, dipping it in flour from time to time to ensure a clean cut. Gently transfer crackers to a parchment-lined cookie sheet with a 1/2 inch between them. Bake the crackers on the middle rack for 12 to 15 minutes, or until they are barely browned at the edges. Remove from the oven and set the cookie sheet on a rack to cool.