October 26, 2013 by Shweta D'souza
Makes about 70 crackers
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, finely grated
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cold water
For Chili Mixture (these amounts will spice half of the cracker dough) :
1/8 teaspoon fresh grated garlic
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/8 teaspoon smoked paprika
In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat together butter, cheese, salt and pepper. It may seem strange to blend butter and cheese, but it will come together in a soft ball. With mixer on low-speed, slowly add flour. Mixture will become dry and crumbly. Add two tablespoons of water, one tablespoon at a time. Beat until mixture just comes together into a ball. The mixture may take an extra teaspoon of water, but don’t add too much. The dough should be moist but not wet.
Divide the dough in half and add chili seasoning to half of the dough. Knead the spices into the dough. Leaving streaks of the seasoning is just fine. Wrap each disk of cracker dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes (an hour is better). The dough can also be frozen for future use.
While dough chills, place a rack in the center and upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
On a lightly floured work surface, roll dough very thin, about an eighth of an inch thick. Dot center of cracker with a fork or the end of a paint brush. Place crackers on prepared baking sheets. The pieces can be close together as they won’t expand much when baking. Bake for 13 to 15 minutes until fragrant, golden brown, and crisp. Allow to cool before serving.
The crackers can be stored in an airtight container for two or three days.