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Quick All Parmesan Crackers

15 Aug

For as infrequently as my husband and I entertain, you’d be faced with quite a difficult task if challenged to find someone who is more prepared to entertain than I am.  We own more cocktail glasses and tiny plates than I think we’ll ever be able to use.  There are at least three types of cheese knives in our silverware drawer, we’re never without an assortment of nuts and crackers for snacking, and we live four blocks away from an absolutely divine wine shop that is more than capable of supplying us with several festive nights’ worth of beverages.

My favorite party trick, however, might just be the one I only recently discovered.  Last week, after finishing off a small, precious package of delicate Parmesan crackers that was gifted to me by my cousin, I began to sniffle a little at the thought of no longer being able to nibble the crackers while enjoying a small splash of white wine as we relaxed in the garden each night.  The crackers were absolutely delightful, you see, very light, pleasantly piquant, and the perfect item to pair with a little nightcap.  Their savory secret lied in the fact that the crackers were made of nothing more than baked Parmesan cheese, a bit of knowledge I was privy to when I first received the crackers, but not really in full realization of until I ran out of them and almost immediately began to yearn for more.

The crackers, allow me to repeat, were made out of nothing but Parmesan cheese, an item I not only had in my refrigerator right then, but always make sure to have in the refrigerator at all times.  The mourning period was over.  The crackers would return.

And, ten minutes later, they did.  Brightened up with a small sprinkling of chopped fresh rosemary (an herb we are able to grow year-round) and a dash of cracked pepper (which, come on, everybody has on hand), I soon found myself in the company of my very own plate of homemade Parmesan crackers that are as easy to make as they are enjoyable to eat.  Made of only two ingredients at most, these crackers are a simple, satisfying treat that are the perfect greeting for any guest.  Or, if you are like me and my husband, they are the perfect small bite to enjoy while engaging very contentedly in a small and cozy party of two.

Quick Parmesan Crackers

These crackers are a totally self-contained treat, meaning they are not the type of cracker one is meant to eat topped with anything.  Trust me, though, you won’t long for any embellishment when eating one of these fine snacks, as they are perfectly fulfilling and satisfying all on their own.

Quick All Parmesan Crackers

½ cup coarsely shredded (not grated) Parmesan cheese

That’s it.  No, seriously.  That’s all.

Optional:

very finely chopped fresh rosemary

freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Scoop 1 rounded teaspoon of Parmesan cheese into a little mound on the parchment lined baking sheet.  If you want to add rosemary or black pepper to your crackers, sprinkle a pinch of each one onto as many Parmesan mounds as you wish, and gently mix in with your fingers.

Bake crackers for 5 minutes on the center rack of the oven.  The crackers will be done when they are deeply golden at the edges and just beginning to turn golden in the middle.  Remove sheet pan from the oven, and allow crackers to cool on pan for 2-3 minutes, until they have cooled firm enough to not fall apart when removed with a flexible spatula.

Makes 20-24 crackers.

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