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Lately I have been feeling very blah about my snacks at work.  There is only so much peanut butter and banana a person can take.  My problem is that if I don’t have a snack lined up and ready to go, I head for the candy bowl in the office across the hall.

I also find that I do better when eating every few hours to help maintain my energy level and weight.  I try to get protein in every little meal, but it’s hard to do when you are stuck and all you can think of is peanut butter and cheese as protein sources.  Yes, there’s a whole world out there of protein sources, like a hard-boiled egg, hummus, yogurt, etc.  But I also need something to go with it.

For the sake of my waistline, I try not to eat chips very often because the whole “once you pop, you can’t stop” campaign worked its way into my brain and now I really have a hard time stopping.  Frankly, the same can be said about thin mints (oops, did I eat that whole package?) and other types of junk food goodness.

So in my head, the solution comes down to 2 things.  First, find a snack that if you OD on it won’t be too bad for you.  Second, try to make that snack as wholesome as possible so OD’ing actually can be a good thing.  See: veggies.  See: me not liking veggies.

In the end, I came up with the idea to experiment with healthy crackers.  I can use these to add crunch, whole grains and fiber to my afternoon snack, and pair it with a lot of different things, like dips and cheese and peanut butter.

For the first attempt, I decided to go the route of a basic cracker with sesame seeds.  Having eaten it, I can say for sure that there are so many flavors and combinations I can think to create that this recipe will keep me for quite a while.

Crackers seem intimidating, but they are SUPER easy.  The only thing you have to be careful is to watch them in the oven.  This is not a walk-away kind of baking.  Luckily, the short baking time means you really didn’t have a chance to go anywhere anyway.

Some tips: I think next time i’ll omit the baking powder, I don’t know that it brought anything to the table.  But i could be wrong and i’ll know after the next batch.  If I do sesame again, i’ll also add in a tsp of sesame oil to enhance the sesame flavor (it is a very strong flavor so a little goes a long way).  My crackers were very crumbly but that could have been because I used whole wheat pastry flour as opposed to regular flour since that’s what i had on hand.

Whole Wheat Sesame Crackers”

Adapted very loosely from Snack Girl and Alton Brown

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour (I used pastry flour since it’s all I had)
  • 1/4 cup minus 1 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp ground flax (you can omit and just use flour, but i like sneaking healthy in)
  • 1/2 cup sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • up to 1/3 cup water

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 435 degrees.
  2. Mix together the dry ingredients in a bowl (I did this by hand, but you can always use a food processor.)
  3. Add in the olive oil and stir to combine.
  4. Slowly add in water until mixture holds shape and doesn’t crumble too easily.  This will be somewhere between 1/4 and 1/3 cup of water
  5. Put dough on a lightly floured surface and cut into 6 chunks.  Roll out as thin as you can.  If you want a thicker, chewier cracker, keep it rolled to about 1/4 inch.  I tried to get to about 1/16.
  6. Transfer onto baking tray.
  7. Bake for about 5 minutes, flip crackers, and bake another 3-5 minutes.  WATCH CLOSELY.  They get too brown in a half a minute.
  8. Pull from the oven.  Let cool and break into cracker sized pieces.  You can eat them warm too, they’re yummy either way.
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