Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Going Nuts... and Crackers, Too!

I've taken a breather from holiday baking since Thanksgiving, as you may have noticed. Frankly, I've been too tired to do much! But tonight, I couldn't take it any more... I had to get back into the kitchen.

Instead of working on the next batch of cookies, I decided to shift to a couple of simpler projects, both equally enjoyed by my friends.

First, I made a batch of rosemary walnuts, one of my favorite spiced nuts (and easily the favorite of the fair Titania, too).

Spiced with rosemary, sage, salt, and paprika, these walnuts are coated with a mixture of butter and oil for a simple but richly-flavored snack. A few people will get little bags of these tucked into their goodie boxes, but this is one treat I do intend to hold back -- just a small portion! -- for myself.

Next, I pulled out the recipe for cheddar crackers, found somewhere online a few years back. For this snack, I was able to use mostly local ingredients: butter, shredded cheddar, whole wheat flour, and dried thyme.

After a bit of mixing with my wooden spoon (see, I still can't remember to use the new mixer!), I worked the dough together with my hands and shaped it into a long round log.

I tucked the dough into the fridge to chill while I baked the walnuts, and once those were done, I pulled the dough back out, sliced it, and baked the crackers. (I really ought to remember to make the log smaller next time... these are BIG crackers.)

Two more items to check off the holiday baking spreadsheet! I'm making good progress and hope to ship boxes out next weekend (friends from afar, take note!).

And that's two fewer things to drive me nuts.


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