Gluten Free Cheddar Crackers

Savory Recipes, Spring • 1 Jun 2009

Coping with food allergies or intestinal diseases seems to be par for the course in today’s environment. With toxins lacing the food we eat, compounded with the noxious air we breathe, it is no surprise that our bodies react in extreme and bothersome ways. You hear more cases of nut allergies, lactose intolerance, IBS, Celiac, and wheat and soy allergies than ever before.

New eating needs necessitate the demand for newfangled cooking.

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Having recently come across the book Healing Foods by Sandra Ramacher, I was extremely surprised to find such interesting and versatile recipes geared towards those who experience digestive diseases. All her recipes are grain free, gluten free and sugar free in addition to being simple, gourmet, inspired and layered with flavor.

Ramacher’s cheddar cheese crisps are one of the best salty, cheesy, crunchy snacks on the planet. They are comprised simply of almond flour, a frequently used substitute for wheat flour, cheddar cheese, cayenne pepper, baking soda and water. I left out the suggested thyme as I thought it might detract from the cheesy, spicy boldness with too much earthiness. The taste, compounded with the fact that it is gluten free, make it a foolproof snack with a zesty bite and crackling texture.

Ramacher’s book proves that dietary changes need not be arduous and painful. Sacrificing flavor and quality proves unnecessary with carefully written, elegant, thoughtful recipes.

Cheddar Crisps
Adapted from Sandra Ramacher

1 cup almond flour, processed in food processor until flour is finely ground
1 cup sharp cheddar, grated
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
2 1/2 to 3 tablespoons cold water

1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees. Line 2 baking trays with parchment paper.

2. Mix almond flour, cheddar, baking soda and cayenne pepper. Add the cold water and mix to form into a flat dough. Cover and place into the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

3. Take the dough from the refrigerator and take about 1 teaspoon of dough and roll each one into a ball and squeeze down with your fingers onto the prepared baking tray. Each cracker should be about 1/8 inch thick and at least 3/4 inch away from the next cracker. Bake in oven for about 25 minutes OR until edges start to brown. Be very careful to monitor your crackers. You do not want them to overbrown during this stage. The crackers still need to look pale in the center.

4. Turn the oven down to 200 degrees. Take the trays out of the oven and let cool for 5 minutes. Turn each cracker over and put the trays back into the oven. Bake for another 30 minutes, turn the oven off and let the crackers sit in the oven until the oven has cooled down.

5. Take the trays out of the oven and let cool completely. Crackers should be slightly browned, but still pale. It is important not to brown beyond a faint golden hue, as the crackers will not taste good.

Store in airtight container, between kitchen paper.

Makes 20 crackers.

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