Tuesday, June 18


kitchen solitude is pretty rare stuff, but the precedent I have set in my parents' house seems to guarantee me at least a little bit from time to time when I'm here. I probably have too much fun with it.

one of my latest baking obsessions involves cheese + crackers. in most situations I'm not a great fan of cheese--but if it's the right sort of cheese, baked neatly into buttery little crackers, then yes, mm, cheese.
the recipe, which I got from dear Smitten Kitchen, is simple as anything and easy to adapt for whatever kind of cheese you like, or whatever fattening or less-fattening dairy product you happen to have in your fridge. I've made four or five different versions. most of the time I at least triple the recipe's amounts, if I have enough cheese, which I usually do. what else am I going to do with a bunch of shredded cheese?
some of mine have cream, some just milk. my first batch used gruyere. I'm not sure if mozzarella would work, but I will probably try it sometime. Smitten Kitchen's Ms. Perelman has a thing for crackers, I think. her lovely blog has bunches of great cracker recipes. this parmesan cream one just happens to be my favourite so far.
the only time-consuming part is rolling out the dough and cutting it into shapes. but really it's not that time-consuming. and you get to make them any shape you want. I did postage-stamp-style squares one time. plain squares another time. sloppy triangles once. just the other day I made parallelograms.  
homemade crackers no doubt seems silly to some people. why bother? such effort. such mess. what is the point?

ah, but what is the point of anything? (yeah, this is a cheap and overly-general retort. so what?) buying boxes of factory-made crackers can't have any more or less inherent meaning than making your own. these are two different choices. their costs and benefits add up differently in terms of time, money, space, calories, etc. I enjoy the whole process of mixing up cheese crackers my very own self. I love the warm crispiness of them and take some sort of pride in the custom-made-ness of them, too. that's me. you are allowed to think it's crazy.

in a more recent recipe post (this one featuring ice cream sandwiches), Perelman admits to a "longstanding affair with creating homemade versions of things you normally buy at the grocery store." and maybe I am on the same slippery slope, ankle-deep in the beginnings of the same affair. in fact, I made my own version of the ice cream sandwiches from that very post last week and there are a bunch still hanging out in our freezer. making things is so much more fun than purchasing them, usually. kitchen solitude will probably always beat grocery store crowdedness, anyway.


Allison said...

I am in the same boat Amelia....but a little differently. I love to try to make what restuarants make. I love the challenge....and sometimes I think to myself that is so not worth $10. :)

Happy Mom said...

I'm gonna make these with my daughters!

amelia chesley said...

they are so, so good.

restaurant recipes are fun too, but I usually don't have the diligence to stick close to the originals. too creative, I must be. heh.