homemade graham crackers

graham crackers.

best cheesecake crust crumb ever. loved by children everywhere accompanied by chocolate and melted marshmallow. sort of healthy due to whole wheat content and possible raw sugar content.

unavailable in australian supermarkets, and to be honest i would probably have forgotten all about them if i hadn't seen a snippet somewhere, sometime, sorta recently, featuring homemade graham crackers with dark chocolate and homemade marshmallow. wow.

that got me thinking about (actually, obsessed with) making graham crackers and all of a sudden there i was on google, in the kitchen measuring squares and pricking them with a fork to lend them a suitably graham cracker-esque look.




this is loosely based on a recipe somewhere on the internet, but wildly adjusted as the original didn't seem to work. funny how that can happen with internet recipes sometimes.

1/2 C unbleached, stoneground flour
1 1/2 C whole wheat flour (if available, graham flour)
1/2 C other flour (ie rye, rice, buckwheat etc.)
1/2 C raw sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
100 grams of unsalted or salt reduced butter, cut into small cubes
2 T honey
2 T molasses

a bit of ice water

preheat oven to 180 degrees (375 degrees farenheit)

i used a food processor, but that is unnecessary. blend all dry ingredients, followed by the butter. combine until the mixture is a sandy texture, then add the honey and molasses. now is where you'll have to drizzle in the ice water, until the mixture comes together and you can form a ball of dough. it will sort of feel like pastry.
if it seems to 'short' (ie as though there is too much butter) add a bit more flour.

shape the dough into a rough square and refrigerate for 20 minutes or so.

cut the square into quarters and work with one quarter at a time to roll out a thin sheet of dough. it should be fairly easy to handle. cut it into whatever shapes you please and put it on a sheet of baking paper in the oven. continue with the rest of the dough. this is the most time consuming part, i used multiple racks and plenty of baking paper (reuse any baking paper that can be wiped clean).

i'm not sure how long each sheet of graham cracker took to bake, but i removed each sheet before the cracker was completely hard, and once they cooled they hardened up considerably. i've been storing mine in the fridge to keep them fresh.


delicious with coffee and tea :)


food for thought

i have been absolutely devouring food-related books at the moment. clearly.

a few seen below already have a home on my bookshelves. the rest are on borrowed time from the library, however i'd be more than happy to let them all live with me, especially that delicious cookbook.

'eat food. not too much. mostly plants'. simple enough, no?

revisited this wedding gift the other day. it makes me love food and food lovers even more.

a quarter acre isn't too much to ask, is it?

remove yourself from the extractive economy.

beautiful book, beautiful food. seriously mouthwatering cooking tome.

loved her other books. i'm partway through this one, and it is super duper too.

really inspirational little read, full of great resources and ideas.


log drivers waltz pleases girls completely

i have very poignant memories of watching this canadian vignette in primary school. i think we watched it during recesses that were spent indoors due to inclement weather. it was always a treat. i loved thinking about floating down the river on a log.

for some reason this song popped into my head this morning, probably because of the drizzle. today is looking like it will be one long indoor recess.


crackers from scratch

continuing with my current 'make from scratch' theme is a little gem from this weekend. i've been wanting to make crackers for ages because they are one of the only items we are still buying from the grocery store. i will possibly still buy crackers occasionally, but they were super easy to make and endless variations are possible. i'd like to incorporate some whole wheat or other types of flour next time, and remind myself to bake on a lower temp for longer.


here is the basic recipe i used

2 C organic stone-ground flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
a bit of sea salt and pepper
1/3 C olive oil
2/3 C warm water (approximately)

optional toppings included sesame seeds, grated parmesan and sumac

preheat oven to 160 c.

i used a food processor with a dough blade, which i use to make all bread/pizza dough and pasta dough. add dry ingredients, excluding toppings. slowly add the olive oil through the top hole while running on low, then slowly add the water while the machine is running. add just enough water for the dough to form a ball. take the ball of dough out of the machine and kneed a little to get it nice and smooth, then cut it into 4 sections and work with one section at time to roll it out until it is as thin as you want. personally, i liked the thin crackers a lot more than the thicker ones i made.

put the rolled out dough on some baking paper on a cookie sheet and sprinkle it with your topping of choice then cut into shapes with a knife or a pizza cutter. you could be methodical and measure your 'crackers' so they are all uniform but i like the rustic look.

pop in the oven until crisp.

peppermint tooth scrub


i've been loving making things from scratch lately. last week i found an idea for homemade toothpaste and decided to give it a try. after further research, discovered using baking soda daily on teeth may not be a good idea due to abrasion of the enamel, but boy are my teeth feeling clean since using a couple doses of this simple, scrubby, minty paste. i love it. tartar begone. i am going to try and restrain my use to bi-monthly.

2 T glycerin
1 T xylitol (available from sweetener section of healthfood stores, it is a natural fluoride-like substance)
1/2 tsp salt
3 T baking soda
1/4 tsp peppermint extract

mix all ingredients until well incorporated. you may have to add a little more glycerin or a little more baking soda depending on how you want the consistency. mine turned out a little less pasty than normal toothpaste.

my efforts towards making toothpaste aren't over. i've been reading about safer abrasives to use, and i haven't read anything conclusive as of yet.

happy scrubbing!


5 things i will never (never?!) buy again

image via flickr

last week one of my favourite bloggers, rhonda jean over at Down to Earth wrote a post about the 5 things she would never buy again.

i could not get this topic out of my head. five things i will NEVER buy again? never is a long time. never is forever. and what is the point, besides saving money/consuming less/being green etc? i've been thinking a lot recently about how to opt out of our disfunctional economic system in small ways, and i think this is one of them.

so, without further ado, here are the 5 things i will never buy again.

1. paper napkins. i've never been a big napkin user and have never bought paper napkins for personal use before. but then i started thinking, what about kids birthday parties? then what? i think in the past i have (ahem) 'borrowed' paper napkins from my mother in law for said birthday parties. this year i am seriously making a large number of fabric napkins. i am not joking. watch me.

another point about napkin use. what about using paper napkins? i may use them at restaurants but shall not use them excessively.

2. pizza bases. again, never been big on buying pizza bases, so i think it's safe to say that i will not in the future. they are way too easy to make and way too tasty.

3. deodorant after a recent foray into making my own

4. commercial cleaning products. all baking soda and vinegar from here on in.

5. factory farm eggs. hmm. i am hoping i can fulfill this fifth thing. could there be a moment in my future where i am so desperate for eggs that i will buy anything less than free-range or organic? possibly. but i don't see it as likely, so here is my fifth. factory farm eggs.

i suppose there are plenty of things i will never buy again because i have never bought them before, but those things don't count. i'm thinking that things i am consciously choosing not to buy are the only things that count. i am hoping to add to this list. currently i am on a no clothes diet. no store bought clothes, although i can buy second hand. i'd like to try to make all my clothes this year, excluding underwear, hosiery and shoes for now.

there are lots of things i hope never to buy again and will be trying hard not to buy again. canned beans and baby wipes are definitely on my radar at the moment, but i'm not ready to say never quite yet.

i think i would like this list to a habit, a sort of bi-annual vow. maybe even a quarterly. 2o things per year i will never buy again.

what things will you never buy again?


shot this week


sleepy 4 month old


daddy love


bea hijacking baby toy at the gallery of modern art


is that a happy meal toy she's playing with?


'painting' with a flashlight. bea loved this activity.


silly serious tableau the other night


my creative space


there's been a bit of quilt mania over here as summer threatens in queensland. folks have eloped, babies are about to be born, and i have secured a tentative affirmation that a quilt may be welcome on our bed.

i'm pleased to say that i completed one picnic quilt on sunday. it is meant for a family of four who sneakily snuck off to secretly seal the deal and probably didn't receive many gifts as a result.

also, i completed the top piece of a baby cot quilt, made for future third baby of a family. he is probably going to have a lot of hand me downs from his older brothers so i thought it might be nice for him to have something of his own. it is a brick sort of style pieced quilt, which works well for my gift of imprecision. in the photo above it is falsely seen as complete as it was placed on an already existing cot quilt for folding and photographing.

the main quilting excitement for me this week is that my man has possibly given me the go-ahead to make a quilt for our bed. this is a big deal. he has very strict standards? stipulations? style requirements? so that is why i say possibly. the condition/s is/are that the quilt must basically be one colour. i'm allowed to do various squares but must use one colour (preferably white or off-white, ideally unbleached organic cotton or something). it may have some colour details such as a few patterned posts and borders and maybe little reverse appliqued circles. it must be subtle. i am to submit my design and then i may or may not be able to start.

to see what others have been making, visit kootoyoo.