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Daring Kitchen November 2011: Cooking with Tea

Posted by Jeanne on November 14, 2011

Sarah from Simply Cooked was our November Daring Cooks’ hostess and she challenged us to create something truly unique in both taste and technique! We learned how to cook using tea with recipes from Tea Cookbook by Tonia George and The New Tea Book by Sara Perry.

This is another good challenge for me – I’ve never made anything with tea before.  Most of the recipes you’ll find are for sweet baked goods – things like cookies and scones.  But part of the challenge was to make a savory, not sweet dish – so I was stumped at first.

I was thinking of doing a soba cooked in green tea – but then I thought the dipping sauces and toppings would overpower the tea flavor too much.  And then I dinked around for ages and THEN the challenge was almost due so I had to make SOMETHING… so I decided to make crackers.

Tea-flavored Homemade Crackers, based on this recipe

Ingredients

1 ¼ c. flour
1.5 Tbs. sugar (or honey, I used honey)
0.5 tsp. salt
0.25 tsp. black pepper
4 Tbs. butter
0.25 c. water
0.25 tsp. vanilla
dry tea leaves (I used rooibos for half the batch and an Earl Grey green for the other half)

Method:

Preheat oven to 400F.

Combine the flour, salt, pepper, and butter in the bowl of a food processor, and pulse until the dough is pea-shaped. Combine the water and vanilla in a measuring cup, plus honey if using, and add to the flour mixture. Mix well until combined and dough forms, but only as long as necessary for the most tender crackers.

Use parchment paper, a lightly greased cookie sheet, or an ungreased baking stone.

Only use half of the dough at a time.  Add the tea and knead to incorporate into the dough.

Roll the dough as evenly as you can. Keep rolling until the dough is as thin as humanly possible without tearing.

Use a pizza cutter or sharp knife and cut the dough into squares or triangles, about 1 1/2 inches each.  If you want all beautifully square crackers, you can trim the edges square.  I am lazy and don’t care so I didn’t bother.

If you have used a mat or parchment paper, just slide it onto the cookie sheet. If you don’t have either, you’ll have to move each cracker individually.  (I used parchment paper to avoid this issue).  Sprinkle the squares lightly with salt.

Repeat with the remaining piece of dough.

Bake the crackers until crisp and browned, 5 to 10 minutes. If you want to do two trays at once, you can put one on top and one and bottom and switch them halfway through the baking time.

If some of the thinner crackers on the edges brown too quickly, remove them and return the remaining crackers to the oven to finish baking. Watch closely as they bake quickly!   I did 5 minutes, rotated the sheets, and then another 2.5 minutes and they were done.

Check it out!  Crackers!

These are tasty – you get a hint of tea flavor, and they’re nice and crisp.  Will definitely make them again!  Thanks Sarah for a fun challenge!

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3 Responses to “Daring Kitchen November 2011: Cooking with Tea”

  1. Jenni said

    Crackers! How fun! Which crackers did you like best? The Earl Grey ones would be my favorite!

    • Jeanne said

      I liked the rooibos ones best – that is my favorite tea! My husband only drinks Earl Grey so I think he preferred those.

  2. Genius! What a good idea to make tea-speckled crackers. They are beautiful and would be great with pumpkin soup, I think. Thanks so much for taking part in the challenge!

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