Personal Sustainability: How-To Recipes Uncategorized

Indoor Kitchen Projects

Don’t open the back door!

We are finally enjoying a true blizzard in our new home!  Fluffy white drifts tip into the house each time I open the front door.   I’m excited to play in the snow – my first priority is sledding or cross country skiing down Mt. Philo.  I think I’ll wait, though, until I can confidently get back up the driveway when I return.  In the mean time, here are some fun indoor projects that are perfect for a snowy day:


Soothing salves


Homemade crackers




Homemade Crackers

I baked crackers once in middle school.  My main memory was about how terribly long it took, only to produce a small tin of crackers.  I don’t remember how they tasted.

homemade-crackers Luckily, my past memories didn’t prevent me from trying again.  I love making things from scratch because I get to pick the quality of ingredients and method of preparation.  My recent batch of crackers was delicious – their nutty whole grain flavor had the perfect crunch (not too hard, not soft).  My  recipe made quite a few – they packed six cookie trays full.  I soaked the flour overnight to make the flour more digestible and make the whole grain dough easier to work with (if you’re interested, read more here).  Soaking requires you to plan ahead, but it doesn’t increase the overall prep time.  I played around with mix-ins, choosing to make plain, sesame & honey, and za’atar flavored versions.  Happily, my homemade cracker memories have been replaced.  The verdict: definitely worth it!

zaatar-crackersSoaked Flour Crackers

Ingredients (makes about 6 full cookie trays of crackers):
1.5 cups whole wheat flour
1.5 cups rye flour
1/2 cup white flour
2 teaspoons sea salt
1 stick pastured butter (8 tablespoons)
1.25 cups plain whole fat yogurt

Day One: Mix dry ingredients.  Cut butter into flour and pinch until crumbly.  Add yogurt and mix (easiest with hands!).  Let sit, covered, at room temperature for 12-24 hours.

Day Two: Knead in any add-ins (see below).  Roll as thin as you can on a floured cool counter.  My first batch always comes out a bit thicker and sometimes puffs in the middle. I then realize I could actually roll the dough thinner, resulting in crispier crackers.  Cut with a butter knife and arrange on a cookie tray.  They can be quite close, but not touching.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes.  I take them out when they’re just starting to brown.  Cool on a stone countertop or on cooling racks.  Enjoy!

Add-Ins: I divided my dough into three parts.  One I left plain.  Into the second I kneaded in honey, tahini, and sesame seeds.  I added a favorite herb blend – za’atar – into the third until the dough couldn’t hold any more.  All baked well and tasted delicious!