Millions of natural yeasts worked hard to create the unique flavor profile that is specific to your sourdough starter, it’d be a shame to waste all that effort! This recipe for sourdough crackers is as easy as it gets, and lets you use the discard from feeding your sourdough starter to make a variety of homemade crackers. No sourdough starter handy, no worries, find out how to make one here!
Making Sourdough Crackers
I suggest making this recipe by hand to prevent overworking the gluten, we want a nice crisp cracker with a snap worthy of the Great British Bake Off. Use a spoon to mix all the basic recipe ingredients together until a shaggy dough forms, then use your hands to quickly knead until the dough comes together. The dough should not be overly sticky, otherwise it will be difficult to roll out, add a little extra flour if necessary if it is sticking to your hands. Set the dough aside to rest for a few minutes (or longer to develop the sourdough flavor) while you get your add-ins together.
Using A Pasta Machine
I have an older hand operated pasta machine that I use to roll my dough out. It makes for nice even crackers, and it’s easy to find the thickness you prefer. If you don’t have a pasta machine you can also roll the dough out by hand, just try to keep the dough thin (hint: work with small sections of dough at a time).
Play around with the type of flour you add. You can stick to plain white if your prefer, but adding in a bit of wheat or rye can create interesting textures and flavors (think a water cracker versus a wheat thin).
Once you have the basic dough ready to go, the world is your oyster when it comes to adding flavor. Add any dried herb or seasoning of choice. Shredded cheese is one of our favorite additions (Mexican fiesta mix, sharp cheddar, or parmesan are a few ideas) and play with combinations (Rosemary parmesan is delicious). Below you’ll find guides to our top add ins and some advice about how to best incorporate them into the dough.
Rosemary or Herb Crackers
Use 1-2 Tbsp of dried herbs per batch
If I am I making the whole batch the same flavor I’ll add my dried herbs in with the flour, olive oil and salt at the very start. If I am splitting my batch to make more than one flavor, I quickly knead the herbs by hand in before resting the dough. Be aware that if you use spices that are larger (fennel, rosemary, onion flakes) they can create holes in your dough when using the pasta roller. Fold your dough in half over itself and reroll, backing down a notch on the pasta machine if needed.
Use 1/2 of shredded cheese per batch.
My preferred way to add cheese is wait until I’m almost finished rolling out my dough. You can add cheese to the dough at the very beginning if you are rolling out the dough by hand but it incorporates almost completely during the rolling and folding process when using the pasta machine. I prefer to see individual specks of cheese in my crackers so I wait until almost the very end to add it. Once I have run my dough on notch 4, I sprinkle the cheese over half of my dough and fold the other half on top, pressing the two halves together firmly. I run the length through my pasta machine again on notch 4, and then run it a final time on notch 5 to get my final thickness.
Everything Bagel Crackers
If you are going to use a spice mix with several large components it is best to wait until you have rolled your dough out before sprinkling the seasoning over. You can use your hands or an extra sheet of parchment paper to gently press the seasoning into the dough.
150g Sourdough Starter
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1/4 tsp Salt
Additional flour for dusting
Flaky salt optional
1-2 Tbsp of dried herbs and/or
1/2 C Shredded cheese
*See notes above for adding in any seasonings*
Making the Dough
Preheat oven to 400 degrees, setting rack to upper third of oven
Mix sourdough starter, flour, olive oil and salt together in a bowl, until a shaggy dough forms. If it seems a little dry add a little water a tablespoon at a time until it comes together but it should not be sticky.
Once the dough has come together knead briefly in the bowl until the dough is smooth and firm.
Let rest for 15 minutes up to several hours. The longer it rests the more the sourdough flavor will develop.
Rolling Out the Dough
On a well floured surface, pat dough out into a round. Run through pasta machine on largest setting several times, folding in half and running through again until dough takes on a smooth supple feel. If you are not using a pasta machine just roll out as thin as desired letting dough rest as needed if it begins to spring back on you.
Run the dough through the pasta machine, changing settings as you go so that your dough becomes thinner. Dust with flour as needed between each run and cut the dough in half if it becomes to long to handle. My final setting is usually 5.
Place on parchment covered baking tray. If you want more rustic looking crackers bake whole, if you prefer more evenly shaped crackers use a sharp knife to gently score surface of the crackers prior to placing in the oven.
Sprinkle with a little flaky salt if desired. Depending on how active your starter is you can dock the dough with the tines of a fork to prevent large air bubbles forming.
Baking and Storage
Bake for 7-9 minutes or until golden brown and crisp
Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before breaking apart and placing into a air tight container for storage.