A Recipe For Sourdough Crackers

June 25, 2020

A Recipe For Sourdough Discard Crackers

Different methods of making sourdough bread call for different ways to treat the starter. The way my partner makes our bread is to discard half the starter before feeding it, which means there’s excess that has been - until this recipe - going to waste.

If you don’t know what I’m talking about, a starter is a pre-ferment made from flour, water, and yeast. It’s used to make sourdough bread, which can be an arduous task to do at home. The process often requires discarding half of the starter before feeding, and this starter discard can be turned into all sorts of things from pancakes to crumpets.

Crackers are something I find tricky to buy without packaging and so far my homemade efforts to bake them have been mediocre at best. I started out by following this recipe by Bon Apetit, which I then tweaked to get crisper, flakier, punchier tasting crackers.

Plain crackers are nice but flavoured ones are even nicer. I like to season my dough with a mix of herbs like oregano, rosemary, and thyme; toasted black paper and flaked salt; nutritional yeast, sumac, or chilli flakes.

If baking sourdough is too much of a chore, you can easily make your own sourdough starter just to make these crackers - and it would be totally worth it. Maintaining a starter is low-effort and baking these crackers is high-reward. Try it.



Ingredients

1 cup starter
1 cup flour
1/4 olive oil
pinch of salt, optional



Instructions

Heat the oven to 350C/gas mark 4.

Put the flour into a large mixing bowl then pour in the starter, oil, and salt.

Mix together with your hand. It’ll look stringy and feel clumpy at first but keep working it together until all the flour is incorporated and a taut dough will start to form.

Knead the dough a couple of times before transferring to a cutting board.

Divide into quarters. If you’re flavouring your crackers, mix in your herbs or spices now. You can do this after dividing the dough up or before, depending on whether you want one or many different flavours.

Take one ball of dough and roll it out really thin onto a reusable oven mat or parchment paper. You want the dough to be as thin as you dare if you want super crisp, flaky crackers.

With a knife, slice into half or quarters. I found this helps the dough to get crispy on all sides resulting in better crackers.

Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes until it starts to brown.

Remove from the oven, leave to cool, and then snap it up into shards.

Store in an airtight container. Delicious on their own, served with homemade dips, or mixed through a salad.



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