Homemade Cheez-Its

Sometimes I just like to play in the kitchen.  I like to find and try recipes that are a little fun and unusual.  Just last week when I went to the grocery store, my son asked me to buy Cheez-It crackers for his lunch.   When I saw this recipe for homemade Cheez-Its this week, I knew it would most likely be a hit.  I was right!

Saturday morning, I got to work making my crackers, (as well as a couple of other new items).  I had some sharp white cheddar that needed to be used, so that’s what I did.  Regular yellow cheddar would work just fine, but I think using a sharp flavored cheddar really makes the flavor better.  Also, you can use pre-shredded cheese, but I have discovered that shredding your own really does taste better.  Packaged shredded cheese has an additive that coats the pieces to keep them from sticking together in the package. The coating is called “cellulose”, but it is actually a powdered wood pulp.  Yuck!  No wonder freshly grated tastes better!

Making them really didn’t take very long and the flavor was fantastic!  As the recipe says, let them cool a bit, but do eat them right away.  They are absolutely best when fresh and slightly warm!

cheez its 022Ingredients:

  • 8 oz shredded cheddar cheese (I used sharp white cheddar)
  • 4 tablespoons salt butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 – 4 tablespoons ice water

Directions:

Mix together the shredded cheese,  half of the salt and the softened butter.

Add in the flour and mix until the dough looks like little fluffy clumps.

With a mixer, begin adding the ice water and mix until a soft dough forms. (use as much ice water as you need for a dough to form).

Divide the dough in two pieces.

Form each piece into a disk and wrap in plastic.

Refrigerate the dough for about 30 minutes.

Roll the dough out on a floured surface into about an 1/8 inch thickness and using a fluted pastry cutter or pizza cutter, cut the dough into about 1 inch squares.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F and line your baking sheets with parchment paper.

Transfer your little cheez-its onto the parchment paper.

If you wish, make a hole in the center of each with a toothpick, then sprinkle them with the rest of the salt.

Bake for about 7 – 10 minutes (baking time will depend on your oven, just watch them carefully so they don’t burn!), or until they have puffed up and the edges begin to brown.

Let cool before eating. (They are best eaten right away, but you can store them in an airtight container).

cheez its 010

Recipe Source:  Better Homes & Gardens