Tuesday, November 12, 2013
As I have had to learn to cook for Abby one of the tricks I have found is to explore various cultures for their foods. Unfortunately most western cooking contains a lot of ingredients she reacts to, and often can be difficult to sub out and replace and still appreciate the end product.
My latest obsession is reading Polish and Russian recipes. One of the staples for Abby is potato and we have found that she does very well with buckwheat and millet as well. Which makes Polish and Russian food a great place to explore for some new food idea's.
I dragged home a Polish cookbook from half priced books(I just cannot bring myself to buy a kindle, I NEED to have the book in my hands). One of the first recipes that caught my eye was Paluszki. Based on the recipe I suspect this was supposed to be more biscuit then cracker but after trying one soft and then one crunchy, we fell in love with the thinner more crisp option. The fact that the recipe called for mashed potato is what convinced me to try them first. I have found that when I can add either mashed potato or mashed yucca to various gluten free baked goods, we are always pleased with the texture and flavor.
I used palm shortening instead of butter, and of course gluten free flour instead of wheat flour. I rolled these very very thin and reduced the oven temperature from 425 to 375 in order to get a nice crisp cracker without over browning.
The softer version were also fabulous, but like many recipes for Paluszki suggest, they are best hot out of the oven. The crackers are more practical, and just better for us.
Gluten-free crackers have been a challenge for me. Being limited in fats hasn't helped. Though we like our crackers we have previously made, they tend to get too hard instead of crisp. Sometimes I wonder how long my teeth can handle eating my gluten free crackers because they are often almost too hard for me to really enjoy.
These were light, airy, crisp. Immediately you could taste a slight potato flavor(think pringles!) and despite being so crisp and light these could handle dips well. I use caraway in a number of recipes though I am conservative about it. When I saw the heavy amount of caraway on these I had some concerns it would be just too much for us, however we were surprised to find that the heavy sprinkle of caraway made these just beyond amazing. Abby and I think we might try some other herbs in the future, but hands down the caraway really make these spectacular!
Gluten-Free Caraway Crackers:
7 Tablespoons palm shortening(spectrum or tropical traditions)
1 1/3 cup potatoes, cooked & mashed
1 cup gluten free all purpose flour
1 egg, beaten
1/2 teaspoon salt(pink himalayan is what we use)
1 tablespoon caraway seed
Caraway Gluten Free Crackers:
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Combine palm shortening, potato and gf flour to form dough, and knead until a ball forms.
Refrigerate for 30 minutes, then roll out very thinly. I rolled between 2 sheets of parchment that I sprinkled with a healthy amount of gf flour.
brush with beaten egg.
Sprinkle with salt and caraway seeds. I used a pizza cutter and cut long narrow crackers. Place crackers still on the parchment onto a cookie sheet.(you can try to transfer just the crackers to a greased cookie sheet, but rolled so thin I found it was impossible and they baked perfectly on the parchment.)
Bake until golden 20-25 minutes(depends on how thin you rolled. You can remove the edge pieces and continue baking the center pieces if the edges brown too much)
When you remove these from the oven, immediately recut along your lines to make sure they will come apart clean.