These cheesy, buttery gems will likely become a mainstay in your repertoire. Not only are they crispy, rich and, well, addictive, they can be partially made up to a month in advance. That's because once the dough is made it can be frozen and simply "cut to order" as you need it. Just be sure to freeze it in small portions so that you don't have to defrost it all at once. Although these crackers are great plain, you can draw on the age-old "apples and cheddar" theme by topping them with a dollop of apple or pear butter.
- 4 ounces cheddar, coarsely grated
- 2 ounces Parmesan, finely grated
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened and cut into small pieces
- 2 tablespoons water, plus more if needed
In the bowl of a food processor, place all ingredients except the butter and water. Pulse 5 times. Add the butter and pulse again until the butter pieces are the size of BBs. Add the water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and pulse just until the dough holds together. If the dough is still crumbly, add more water, 1 teaspoon at a time, until it reaches the right consistency.
Turn the dough out onto a large piece of waxed paper. Roll the dough into a log, 9 to 10 inches long, and square off the ends. Refrigerate, well wrapped, for at least 2 hours and up to 2 days. Or freeze it for up to 1 month. (You may want to cut the log in half or in thirds to freeze if you think you will want to defrost a smaller amount at a time.)
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
To make the crackers, cut the log into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Arrange the slices on a baking sheet 1-inch apart. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the crackers are a light golden color. Turn the crackers and bake for 3 to 5 more minutes, or until they are golden around the edges. Cool on a rack. Serve at room temperature.