DETOX: Day 4 -- Healthy Crackers

>> Thursday, December 31, 2009

I'm happy to report that at the start of day 4 of the detox, I'm feeling amazing! (Need to catch up? Check out Day 1, Day 2, and Day 3.) I have way more energy . . . I've lost two pounds . . . I'm excited now to eat all this healthy food . . . and I've stopped having my cravings. OK WAIT. Not that last one. I still am craving tons of cheese and sugar. Ack! Last night we went out to dinner with our neighbors, and I simply couldn't bring myself to eat just a soup and salad. That's what I probably should have ordered . . . but, instead I got a veggie burger on a white bun . . . with jack cheese . . . mac & cheese . . . sweet potato fries . . . and Stephen and I split a brie/chutney appetizer.

Oh, yeah. And a glass of wine. Blah!

It's going to happen, so I'm not going to fret about it. As well, we're in the crazy-prep time for our annual New Year's Eve bash tonight, where we'll be featuring grilled pizza among other tasty things.

That cake I was talking about craving? I made it! But not really. How is that possible? Well, I made vegan chocolate cupcakes, followed the cream cheese-peanut butter frosting recipe on the Smitten Kitchen site, but used vegan cream cheese, and then came up with my own vegan chocolate-pb ganache. Not super healthy, but much healthier than the original! So that recipe for that hot mess is coming soon, soon, soon!

Back to the vegan crackers we made from scratch. They were inspired by ones posted recently on the Oh She Glows blog by Angela. She bakes/cooks up a ton of tasty and incredibly healthy alternatives to favorites like peanut butter cups, crackers, cookies, etc., etc., etc. When I saw them, I had to try 'em. So, I followed her recipe in essence . . . but changed quite a few of the ingredients to fit what we have in our food supply.

What you'll need . . .
(for the basic part before adding flavor)
  • 1 cup uncooked Israeli couscous (or she suggests brown rice)
  • 1/2 cup uncooked seven grain hot cereal (we used wheat-free, you can sub in steel-cut oats, etc.)

Method . . .
  1. Cook both ingredients in separate pots.
  2. Mix together and let cool.
  3. Separate into two bowls. And let the fun begin.
  4. Please note: the recipes below suppose you are making both kinds of crackers. If you choose to make only one kind, simply double the amounts of the ingredients in that one recipe.

What you need . . .
(for rosemary-"cheesy" crackers -- on right)
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon crushed rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon tahini
  • Handful crushed walnuts

What you need . . .
(for sesame-curry crackers -- on left)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons curry powder (depending on how potent you like 'em to be)
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds (we used black ones)
  • 1 teaspoon honey or agave
  • Handful crushed walnuts

Method . . .
(for either recipe)
  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
  2. For each cracker type, throw all ingredients onto the bowl with the grain mixture.
  3. Blend each thoroughly (and separately) in a food processor until well incorporated.
  4. Spray some olive oil onto a cookie sheet and take one kind of cracker "dough" . . . place plastic wrap on top of it and then roll it out until thin.
  5. Remove the plastic wrap and cut into whatever-sized pieces you like. Gently transfer to another prepared cookie sheet.
  6. Repeat process with other cracker type.
  7. Bake at same time for 35 to 40 minutes -- flipping over half-way through. Angela says to watch carefully after 30 minutes to avoid burning.
  8. Cool for 15 minutes (this allows them to harden even more). The result is a great, chewy cracker . . . we liked both kinds, but especially the rosemary-"cheesy" ones. And we WILL be making these again. ASAP.
  9. Enjoy with hummus or any other tasty spread. Or add to a healthy lunch . . .

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