The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

DIY: Those Raincoast Crisps

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joyfulbaker's picture
joyfulbaker

DIY: Those Raincoast Crisps

Awhile back, I tried making a DIY version of Lesley Stowe's Raincoast Crisps.  While they tasted delicious, the texture was somewhat chewy and even a bit gummy, and the raisins all sank to the bottom.  Not a very successful outcome, but they were pretty good, especially with Trader Joe's honey goat cheese spread on top.  I am about to make them again, only this time I'll plump the raisins (or maybe dried cranberries this time) and toss them with a bit of flour, and I'll reduce the brown sugar and honey  just a bit (can also use molasses for all or part of that, as well as maple syrup, according to some recipes).  I got the original recipe online from Julie Van Rosendaal (her cookbook is called Grazing: A Healthier Approach to Snacks and Frozen Food).  Of course there are variations, but here is the original recipe as I got it online:


2 cups flour (I'll mix A/P with W/W pastry flour)


1 tsp salt


2 tsp baking soda


2 C buttermilk (or milk soured with vinegar)


1/4 C brown sugar*


1/4 C honey* 


1 cup raisins (or dried cranberries or dried cherries, halved if large)**


1/2 C chopped pecans


1/2 C pumpkin seeds, roasted (I used roasted sunflower seeds)


1/4 C flax seeds (or flax seed meal or a mixture of the two)


1/4 C sesame seeds


1 TBSP chopped rosemary


* I'll reduce to a scant quarter cup or 4 TBSP of each.


** I will plump the raisins w/ hot liquid (orange juice or sherry) for about 15 minutes, drain and mix with sprinkling of flour.


1.  Preheat oven to 350 deg. F.  Spray two loaf pans (or four mini loaf pans) with nonstick cooking spray (can also line w/ parchment after spraying pan)


2.  Put flour, baking soda and salt in mixing bowl and whisk to combine.  Stir in honey, brown sugar and buttermilk until combined.  Do not overmix.  Add the raisins, pecans, all the seeds and rosemary until combined and well distributed.  Pour batter into prepared pans.  Size of crackers will depend on size of loaf pans.  


3.  Bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes, until well browned but not overbaked.  Cool completely or freeze.  (You can retain half in freezer for another time, since this produces about 5 to 6 dozen crackers.)  Slice loaves as thinly as possible.  Places slices on parchment-lined cookie sheet.  Bake at 300 deg. F. for 15 minutes on first side, then turn and bake for 10 minutes on second side.  Cool and store in air-tight container.


Let me know if you make these and if indeed they come out as "crisps."


Joyful


 

Norman's picture
Norman

It be nice to see a pictures of those.  They probably goes good with a glass of a nice red wine.


 


Norman.

joyfulbaker's picture
joyfulbaker

I made a half recipe of the crisps last night and refrigerated them overnight.  I baked them in two "mini" loaf pans (7 x 3 x 2).  This morning I baked them.  The only difference in the recipe from my previous post is that I combined honey, organic agave and brown sugar to make 1/4 cup total.  I used cranberries, which I plumped in heated, strained orange juice and, when cool, drained and sprinkled with flour (this distributed them very nicely).  Since I used dry buttermilk powder (Saco), I used the orange juice as part of the water (which is used instead of regular buttermilk when the powder is used--instructions on the Saco package give amounts). Since the loaves were cold from the fridge (I wrapped them in foil and then in plastic), I was able to cut them thin, about 1/8 inch.  I photographed them as they were ready for the second bake and then again on the cooling rack, first all of them, then with one turned on edge to show how thin they are.  This attempt was really successful, as they turned out nice and crisp--and tasty.  I packaged them airtight and will serve with a shmear of T.J.'s honey chevre, a delicious pairing.


Joyful


joyfulbaker's picture
joyfulbaker

Forgot to mention, I got 5 dozen out of a HALF recipe!  So if you really get hooked on them and want a lot, I suggest freezing half of the baked loaves, which allows you to do the slicing and rebaking of the remainder at a later time.  Again, the current batch was baked originally in two mini loaf pans, 7 x 3 x 2.  The important thing is slicing them thin, and I used my serrated bread knife (Oxo brand) with a fast sawing motion.  The chilling overnight really made it easy.


Joyful

Norman's picture
Norman

Look great!  I would like to serve those with a warm brie and  fresh fruits and of course a glass of red wine. Thank you for posting pictures.


Norman.

joyfulbaker's picture
joyfulbaker

Norman--Your suggestions sound terrific.  I'll definitely give them a try.


Joyful

cranbo's picture
cranbo

thanks for sharing this recipe! I'm a fan of these crisps, especially the "fig and olive" variety, which has (in place of raisins and pecans, and omitting rosemary):




  • figs coated in rice flour; and

  • Kalamata olives



Interesting, the last ingredients listed on the fig and olive box (after milk) are "brown sugar, baking soda, honey, and sea salt". According to the FDA web site, ingredients in the ingredient lists are supposed to be listed in descending order of weight. This would suggest that by weight, there is more baking soda than honey or salt. 


In any case, can't wait to try them out! I think freezing them (or chilling them very cold) then slicing on a commercial meat slicer would be best to get the thickness right, which strikes me as about 2-3mm. So many seeds and nuts to cut through...


 


 

joyfulbaker's picture
joyfulbaker

So, cranbo, how did your crisps come out?  Did you make them with figs and olives?  I haven't made them in awhile, and the last time I did I still found them a bit too gummy.  Apparently I didn't take your comment into account:   by weight, there is more baking soda than honey or salt.

So it's time to do them again--and this time cut back on honey.  (Probably I should steal a glance at the package next time I'm in Whole Foods.)  But I don't want that "tinny" taste that comes with too much baking soda, either.  More of the story:  Experiment!  Experiment!  (I don't do that nearly enough.)

Joyful


joyfulbaker's picture
joyfulbaker

that is, of the story!