Monday, May 14, 2012

Gluten Free Ritz/Table Crackers (gluten, egg, corn, refined sugar free)

So, my daughter has been in this, "I will make you all pay for saying that I am allergic to this THING called corn," phase of development.  I swear, if I can get through this transitional phase without a nervous breakdown I'll be one happy camper.

So, here was the "issue" that led to this recipe.  My daughter loves Ritz.  I swear it was one of her favorite foods from the time she could DO solids, so when I looked at the box and saw the dreaded corn, not once but TWICE on it (and boy did I have some choice words for Kraft at that moment), I figured I'd better work my butt off to replace said crackers or there was going to be tears (from me...Ritz is the only way my daughter will eat things like tuna fish).

So, I rolled up my sleeves and got to work.  I worked on this recipe ALL day the other day and kept coming close, but not close enough to make myself happy.  I finally nail it to the point that I'm happy, offer my daughter a cracker and she proceeds to tell me that it's icky and walk off.  Nothing says, "love" like the word, "icky" when it comes to your baking when the child wouldn't even try it first.  I finally bribed her with chocolate (oh yes, mother of the year I'm not) to try it and she ate 3/4 of a cracker happy as a clam, said it was good and then asked for more chocolate.  So, I guess it wasn't as "icky" as she thought it was.  *Sigh* kids...gotta love them *laugh*.

So, here you go folks.  Hopefully your children aren't as picky as mine.  And if they are...I'm so sorry and hang in there!

This recipe is easier than the graham cracker recipe.  It's still made in your food processor, but there's no refrigerating the dough or anything like that and I was able to get the fat content down.  If you can't do butter, I'd go with a non-dairy spread here like Earth Balance or whatever you can do that TASTES buttery (or as buttery as you can) as this is sort of a buttery-like cracker.  Whatever fat you use though be sure it's a hard fat (palm shortening, lard, heck refrigerated bacon fat would probably work) as you want the hard fat to distribute throughout the dough to give you a better crumb to the final product and make your crackers more flaky.

Gluten Free Table Crackers/Gluten Free Ritz (Gluten, egg, corn,  refined sugar free)

  • 1/2 cup sorghum flour
  • 1/3 cup millet flour
  • 1/3 cup sweet rice flour
  • 1/3 cup tapioca starch
  • 1/3 cup almond flour (I use Honeyville)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon guar gum (or Xanthum gum if you don't are about the corn free thing)
  • 4 TBS cold butter cut into small chunks, or other hard fat
  • 3 TBS honey
  • 1/4 cup cold water

1.  Add dry ingredients to food processor and pulse to combine well.  Add pieces of butter (or other cold hard fat) and pulse food processor again until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. 

2.  Mix honey and water together in a liquid measuring cup and add slowly as food processor runs until dough comes together.   It should be soft and pliable.  I used the entire 1/4 cup.  If your dough is still dry and not a dough ball at this point, just add a LITTLE bit of water (like tiny amounts until it comes together as it comes together fast when it forms).

Here's a good tip.  Split your dough in half.  I ended up having to take my edge crackers off the cookie sheet at the 13 minute mark and then baking the middle crackers for about 4 more minutes to get significantly dry when I used the entire thing of dough.  When I cut it in half and got the dough universally thinner (about 1/4 of an inch or so), it worked a lot better.

3.  Roll dough out between two pieces of parchment paper and then carefully transfer the sheet of parchment paper on the bottom (with the dough) to a cookie sheet.  Cut out circular shapes (I used a spice container lid) and then dock entire thing with a fork (or you can just use a pizza cutter and make square crackers...I did that after about 3 different batches).  Bake at 325 degrees for 13 to 15 minutes (start checking at the 13 minute mark) until crackers start to turn golden brown.

4.  Cool completely before removing from cookie sheet.  Store in an airtight container at room temperature for a few days or freeze (or food saver) for longer storage.  At, what, 5 days old or so, my table crackers were still wonderful food savered and I ate some today for lunch.  Yummy with tunafish and a sliced black olive on top :).


Unknown said...

It would be so awesome if I could make these. Unfortunately we have a dairy allergy. What do you mean by another "hard fat"?. Could we use coconut oil, palm shortening or soy-free earth balance?

Unknown said...

Sorry! I just went through and actually read your post. I see that earth balance and palm shortening will probably work. Any idea about coconut oil though?

Erika, "The Make Do Homemaker" said...

I would try palm shortening before I'd try coconut oil. I think you'd end up with an oil slick if you used coconut oil. You need the fat to distribute through the mixture to make flakes. I think coconut oil would melt too quickly when baked and you'd end up with hard tack instead.

By the way, sorry for the delay in the reply. I don't get notifications when people post up replies or questions on old posts. I just happened to run across this one :).