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Monday, March 3, 2014

Kale Krackers

It's been a cold, cold winter here in Ohio; the coldest and snowiest on record in a long time.  Just surviving the barn chores made more difficult by sub-zero temps has been a challenge and my definition of the specific temperature that actually qualifies as "cold" has been drastically altered.... 10 degrees Farenheit?  Nah...that's not cold; yes, Professor Einstein, everything most definitely is relative.

Vital for our survival this winter has been a trio of soups that I just love:

  Jonathan's chili soup
Sweet potato-spinach soup (scroll down it is the very last one....absolutely yummy)

 and Corn Bisque (aka "Gruel" by my dear husband).

I think they have been key in helping us make it through the winter without any illness (I credit the ginger in the sweet potato soup especially for this good health).

One thing I always miss with soups though, is a good cracker and since it has been awhile since I've made an attempt at a home-made, healthy version of one, I thought I'd give it a shot this weekend, knowing that a huge pot of chili soup was in the works.

I didn't actually measure the ingredients and was making this up as I went along so the amounts are just estimated here.  I am doing a liver cleanse (I hope to carve out a piece of time to do a blog post on that soon) and otherwise keeping my diet very clean, so I was going for something very hearty and more than just a cracker.  I was pleasantly surprised by the outcome.

Kale Krackers

3 T ground flax seed
1/2 C ground raw sunflower seeds
1/2 C ground oatmeal
1/2 C ground raw almonds (or almond meal)
1/4 C cornmeal
1/2 pound raw kale (I used a combo of red russian and lacinato)
Celtic salt
other seasonings as desired

Soak flax seed for a few minutes in small amount of water.  Add nuts, meal and seeds and combine.  Process kale in high speed blender with enough water to make it pourable.  (I used about 1/2 cup - 1 cup).  Add kale to dry ingredients.  This is where I played with the recipe and added a bit more dry ingredients (I ground up more sunflower seeds) to get a batter-like consistency.  I went for something not as soft as a cake batter but not as stiff as bread dough.

Spread on pizza stone.  Top with salt and/or other seasonings.  I started with a low temp and thought I would go for a long, slow bake which you could do if you are doing a raw diet, but then realized it would take too long for my impatient purposes, so I settled on a 350 degree oven and baked for about 20 minutes waiting for browning at the edges.

I used a pizza cutter wheel and criss-cross cut them while still warm.

They are seriously green!  

This cracker is almost earthy in taste...not your store bought version.  I will try it again with different seasonings (the base here would lend itself nicely to some red pepper flakes or other hot spice) and I also think that pumpkin seeds would be a nice addition.  For a sweeter cracker, a few Medjool dates could be added in with the kale in the blender.  I'm thinking of adding a red sweet pepper in the blender too, maybe some carrots and beets...the possibilities are endless.  This cracker really had the consistency of a cookie almost; I think if I spread the batter out thinner and increased the oven temp., it could make a nice thin hard cracker.

In the meantime, I'll gaze out the window and enjoy the snow and find the beauty of winter over a nice bowl of chili soup.

Sue, -1.1 degrees in Ohio, which is relatively cold.  ;)

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