Make Ahead: Homemade Crackers (In the Freezer)
All They're Cracked Up to Be
When you assemble excellent cheeses, cured meats, and other accompaniments for a holiday hors d'oeuvres spread, don't let the crackers be an afterthought. Sure, you can buy good ones, but homemade versions are even better (not to mention much more economical!). Each of these three recipes uses just a handful of ingredients. Make a batch -- or two, or all three -- and form the dough into logs. (Double the recipes for a bigger stash.) Pop them in the freezer and slice off rounds whenever you want to serve freshly baked crackers with cheese -- or on their own.
Storing: Wrapped well in plastic, the logs of dough will keep for up to 3 months in the freezer.
Let the frozen dough stand at room temperature for about 10 minutes to soften a bit before slicing. A sharp chef's knife is the best tool to use.
WHOLE WHEAT AND SESAME
CHEDDAR AND GRUYÈRE
A double dose of sharp cheeses makes addictive crackers that don't even need a topping -- but we like them with a little pepper jelly or quince paste.
FIG AND ALMOND
Port-soaked figs are sweet and juicy -- perfect in the nutty dough. These crackers are good with soft, mild ricotta and pungent blue cheeses.