Thursday, April 8, 2010

Alphabet and Rosemary Cheddar Crackers


I love Pepperidge Farm Goldfish crackers, so when I saw this post on how to make your own, I was really excited to try it out. I don't have any teeny, tiny goldfish cookie cutters, but I do have rather small alphabet fondant cutters, so I thought it'd be fun to make alphabet crackers.

Cutting out the alphabet crackers

Alphabet crackers

Baked alphabet crackers

I'm used to the bright orange color of the original crackers, so I wanted to find some bright orange cheese to use, but I couldn't find any. So I tried the next best thing and added some yellow food coloring to half the dough since I don't have any orange food coloring, and didn't want to end up with a peach color like I did the last time I tried mixing red and yellow. But the dough was too stiff coming out of the fridge, and I didn't have the patience (or the daylight left) to knead it through properly, so it ended up looking kind of marbled. Which is fine because you can't even tell in the finished product, and ironically enough, the non-yellowed crackers turned out more orange-ish!

Baked alphabet crackers

While the dough was chilling overnight in the fridge, I remembered that I still had some fresh rosemary left from making the duck fat French fries and thought it'd be nice to add some to the cheese cracker dough. So I added some rosemary leaves to the other half of the dough (after all, rosemary cheddar crackers are for adults and don't need artificial food coloring).

Rosemary Cheddar Crackers (adapted from Ellie's Home Cooking)
makes about 1 quart of crackers

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper (optional)
4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
8 ounces shredded cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves
3-4 tablespoons water

Flour, salt, and pepper

Pulse the flour, salt and pepper in a food processor, then add butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal.

Add unsalted butter

Add grated cheese a little at a time until the mixture again resembles coarse meal.

Add shredded cheese

Pulse in 3 to 4 tablespoons of water, one tablespoon at a time, until the dough forms into a ball. It will probably take a minute or so.

Add the rosemary

Remove from the food processor and knead in the rosemary. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill for 20 minutes or up to 24 hours.

Roll out the dough

Roll the dough out to 1/8th-inch thickness directly onto a baking sheet. You don't want to roll them paper thin, neither do you want to roll them too thick. If they are too thin, they will not puff up as much. If they are too thick, they will not be as crispy.

Using a knife, pizza cutter, or cookie cutters, cut into desired shapes.

Cut out the crackers

Bake at 350° F for 15-20 minutes or until crackers are golden brown. Watch them after the 10 minute mark.

Rosemary cheese crackers

I didn't roll the dough out as thin as I should have for some of the crackers, and they were definitely not as crispy as the thinner ones. They did puff up so that they were almost cubical, though, so I threw them on top of a salad because as someone pointed out, they looked just like croutons.

I don't think these tasted exactly like Goldfish crackers, but that's because they don't taste like something you can buy in a store. Which is to say, these tasted like the fresh ingredients they were made out of. I definitely preferred the rosemary crackers to the ones without; the herb added a nice aromatic, almost astringent note to the richness of crackers. Next time I might try adding a bit of Tabasco sauce to the dough to add some heat.

Lastly, you can make this using only all-purpose flour or only whole wheat flour. I tried using half all-purpose and half white whole wheat and will probably try all whole wheat next time since it doesn't seem to make a huge difference.


  1. Joy, I love your blog :) These are so cute. Much better than the gross gold fish crackers my kids used eat in their Sunday School classes!

  2. Fantastic! Sooo cute and such a creative idea!

  3. Yummy idea Joy, they look great!

  4. this would be so fun to do w kids. plus i love rosemary on bread and crackers

  5. oh my gosh, so cute! i want to try and i don't even typically like goldfish crackers!

    the rosemary though, yummm.

    love you and love your blog! <3 meaghan @ http//

  6. Hilarious! And delicious...
    What a great use for all of the mini-cutters we have. I see this happening in our near future!

  7. What cute crackers! The alphabet ones look like they'd take forever to cut out though.

  8. The alphabet crackers are too cute. I love them and am jealous of your creative genius. I just posted another version of this cracker recipe on my own site. Found you via Tastespotting this morning while I was submitting my own.
    I see a mention of duck fat here as well [swoon]!