I don’t know about you but in my household we are huge fans of Cheez-its. I was sitting around with my husband and roommate Dan, when Dan stated a Cheez-it could be made by baking cheese. I was skeptical that the only ingredient for a cracker could be a piece of cheese and decided to look into it. I google searched homemade Cheese its and found a wonderful blog The Thin Chef. After getting distracted by all of the wonderful recipes she has posted I read her entry on cheese its and decided to make a go at it.
What you need:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 1 (7-ounce) bag grated extra-sharp Cheddar cheese
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
- 3-4 tablespoons cold water
Start by combining flour, butter, cheese, salt and cayenne pepper in your food processor. I only had sliced cheese in my kitchen so I broke it up into smaller pieces to fit in my processor. Pulse mixture until mixed coarsely. Pulse in water one tablespoon at a time as needed. You are done when the dough forms a ball around the blade.
Remove dough carefully (blade will be sharp). Wrap in plastic wrap, press flat, refrigerate for 30 mins to 24 hours.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper, set aside.
Place dough between two pieces of parchment paper, roll to 1/8th inch thickness. Gently peel off top layer of parchment paper. Using a pizza cutter, trim edges off so you have a rectangle. Then slice dough into strips of desired size then again in the opposite direction making squares.
Place squares on baking sheets.
Bake for 20 minutes or until desired crispness. Cool sheet of crackers and sample one for crispness. Place in oven for a few minutes longer if they are not crispy enough. Store in airtight container up to one week.
I surprised my husband and roommate with these homemade cheese its when they returned from work and they loved them. I had to take away the crackers before they all disappeared. I have a few suggestions for next time. Make the dough slightly thinner (my husband thought they were a little puffy). Sprinkle ground sea salt over crackers after removing from the oven to make them a little more salty.