Gluten-free flax, oat and seed crackers

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Gluten free crackers are wonderful to have around but they generally cost a bomb. So after cooking them in Costa Rica I did the same back here and Ben and I have been contentedly munching and crunching on these flax and pumpkin seed babies all week. Honey, humus, avo, tahini, even just a creamy hunk of organic salted butter – no topping is too humble or grand and a whole new world of healthy midday snacking has opened up before us.

The base of the recipe is simple: omega-packed flax seeds (they of healing shiny hair and glowing skin power), a few oats and some seeds soaked together in water to create a gloopey, doughey mixture that needs no starch or grains to hold it together. It is a common misconception that oats contain gluten – they do not. But they are often processed with grains that do. So don’t be shy of gluten-free oats, they have not been chemically altered, just protected from their allergenic neighbours.

You can add whatever you like for flavour – herbs, tomatoes, honey, spices – and as long as you add the water slowly, you can’t go too far wrong.

And for the cooking, if you’re doing raw, dehydrate them in trays. Alternatively, for speed, I just spread he mixture thinly in a baking tray and put it in the oven.

The mixture also keeps in the fridge for a day or two, getting gloopier by the hour, so you can make it beforehand and cook the crackers up in batches. But if you’re anything like us they won’t be hanging around for long.

Ingredients:

2 cups flax seed

1 cup gluten-free oats

1 cup pumpkin seeds

1 1/2-2 cups water

sea salt to season

In a mixing bowl add the seeds and oats together with a generous pinch of salt. Add one cup of water, stir thoroughly and leave to soak for an hour or two. The mixture should be binding but malleable, like bread dough or very thick porridge. If it is easy to stir, leave and soak for longer. If it is on the thick side, add a little more water, continue to soak and repeat again if necessary. The thicker the mixture, the thicker it will be spread and the thicker your crackers will be. Likewise, the more water you add, the thinner it will spread, the more crackers you get for your buck.

If you add too much water, as has happened in an impatient moment, simply drain it in a sieve to get rid of the excess liquid.

When you are happy with your dough-like mixture, spread it thinly on a baking sheet or tray, with a little room at one end to insert a palette knife during cooking so you can flip it over. (This speeds things up).

Heat at 180 for 20 minutes, or until the mixture starts to get nice and crispy on top. Bring the tray out, insert a palette knife or turner underneath it and turn it over. If it breaks into chunks, don’t worry, just get it all turned over so the underside can crisp up. Put back in the oven for another 20 minutes to half an hour. All ovens and mixtures do vary a little so keep an eye on things as you go.

When it is crisp all the way though bring it out, leave to cool and break up into crackers. Enjoy immediately or store in an airtight container for up to 4 days.

If you’re really feeling creative you can spread the mixture in circular moulds and make round shapes – or any other. I think flaxseed angels could be next on the menu…

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