Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Graham Crackers

My favorite part of dealing with the challenges of food allergies is learning about new products or products that I'd never dream would ever exist. Have you ever heard of Garfava Flour for example? It's a mix of garbanzo beans & fava beans. For more on the fava bean check out what wikipedia has to say: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vicia_faba. This cool flour combination is one of the key ingredients in Bette Hagman Graham Cracker recipe. Even when (notice my optimism) MG outgrows her wheat allergy we will continue to make this recipe. It's better then the real thing!I got her book intending to conquer wheat & egg free breads (haven't yet but hope to soon) and ending up finding this fantastic recipe. The key is the flour mix she shows below. My last attempt at these crackers using Nucoa Margarine instead of butter didn't turn out as fantastic. I'll continue to note my progress as I experiment with this recipe using non-dairy options. If you can use butter I highly recommend it!

Four Flour Bean Mix
page 40
2 c. Garfava bean flour
1 c. Sorghum flour
3 c. Cornstarch
3 c. Tapioca flour
Mix and store in an airtight container. Makes 9 cups.

Graham Crackers
page 257.
2 c. four flour bean mix (see above)
1 t. xanthan gum
1 1/2 t. salt
1 rounded t. cinnamon
2 1/2 t. baking powder
3/4 c. butter
1/4 c. honey
1 c. brown sugar
1 t. vanilla flavoring
1 to 2 t. water
cornstarch for rolling

In a medium blow, whisk together the flour mix, xanthan gum, salt, cinnamon, and baking powder. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, beat together the margarine, honey, brown sugar, and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients alternately with the water, using just enough to hold the batter in a dough ball that will handle easily. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Preheat the oven to 325. Lightly grease two 12"x15" baking sheets. Using half the dough, work in some cornstarch if necessary to form a ball that isn't sticky. (The dough can take handling.) Roll out on a cornstarch-dusted piece of plastic wrap to a rectangle about 13 inches thick. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet by placing the sheet over the dough, holding the wrap, and flipping the whole piece of dough onto the baking sheet. Continue rolling out the dough until it completely covers the sheet and is about 1/8 inch thick or the thickness of pastry dough. Cut with a pastry wheel into 3-inch squares. Prick each square with a fork 5 times. Bake for about 30 minutes, removing the crackers around the edges if they get too brown. Repeat with the other half of the dough. Makes about 5 dozen.

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