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Crackers, Blue Ginger (P, TNT)
Source: "Simply Ming," by Ming Tsai of The Blue Ginger
Yield: 40

Cracker Dough:
1 tablespoon cumin seed
1 tablespoon coriander seed
1 tablespoon fennel seed
1 teaspoon black peppercorn
1/2 ounce (2 packages) active dry yeast
6-1/2 cups bread flour
1 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons minced garlic
2 tablespoons kosher salt

Materials for Assembly:
1 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for pan
1 egg white for brushing
Kosher salt to taste
1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds

Make Cracker Dough:
Using a mortar and pestle or a spice grinder, grind the cumin, coriander, fennel, and peppercorns and combine them in a medium bowl. Set aside.

In a 5-quart mixer bowl, or a very large bowl if working by hand, combine in this order the yeast, 2-1/2 cups cold water, the flour, oil, garlic and salt. Using a dough hook, mix at low speed until the flour's gluten is fully developed and the dough is smooth and doesn't tear easily when stretched, about 15 minutes. Remove the dough from the machine and knead in the spices.

If working by hand, combine the yeast, flour, oil, and salt and mound the mixture on a work surface. With your fingers, make a well in the mixture. Add 2-1/2 cups of cold water to the well and, working with a pastry scraper or large fork, gradually incorporate the flour into the water, as if you were making fresh pasta. Work the dough into a rough ball and then knead in the garlic and the spice mixture. Continue to knead until the dough becomes smooth, 10 to 12 minutes.

Cover the dough with plastic wrap. If using immediately, allow the dough to rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. Otherwise, refrigerate or freeze until ready to use.

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

In a small bowl, whisk the 1 cup of olive oil and the egg white and set aside.

If using defrosted frozen dough, allow it to double at room temperature, about 1 hour. Flour a work surface generously. Place the dough on it and with your hands flatten the dough into a 1" rectangle. Fold the dough in half and flatten it again into a similar rectangle. Wrap the dough in a damp cloth and allow it to rest for 15 minutes.

Grease 2 large baking sheets, preferable rimmed with olive oil and set aside.

Quarter the dough rectangle and roll each piece 1/4" thick, keeping the rectangle shape. Transfer 1 rectangle carefully to each of the pans and, using your hands, stretch the rectangles to the sides of the pan, making them as thin as possible without tearing. Using a pizza cutter, trim the dough edges. Keep the trimmings, which can be combined and used to make more crackers.

Brush the dough with the oil-egg white wash. Sprinkle the dough with salt and sesame seeds. Using a pizza cutter, cut the dough into 5"x5" rectangles (or any size you like).

Bake the crackers until lightly golden, about 20 minutes. Remove the crackers with a spatula and cool on racks.

Poster's Notes:
These were are whole lot of to-doing but they are so delicious. I made them along with other Asian-themed foods for Shabbos lunch and they were a huge hit. My father-in-law loved them so much he asked for a batch for Father's Day.

Posted by Raquel Schnitzer

Nutritional Info Per Serving: N/A