Honey Cinnamon Graham Crackers

Hello!

Hope you are staying warm during this winter freeze. I know I’m getting sick of this weather. We already had a record-smashing blizzard that caused 2 power outages in my building, so I thought the worst was over. Then yesterday we get hit with a little snow and ice storm that gave us an additional 2 power outages (although these were shorter)! It’s pretty ridiculous that my building had so many power outages, considering we’re in the middle of the city and on 2 power grids! What is happening?! Well, anyway…

Whenever I make ice cream for my husband, it usually requires 6 to 8 egg yolks. Now…what to do with all of those leftover egg whites? I am not one to waste things, and egg whites are very versatile. So I actually like to make a little treat for myself – honey cinnamon graham crackers!

allout

The key to this recipe is to keep the oven temperature low and to watch them so they don’t burn. The crackers on the exterior of the pan will cook much faster, so I usually place the thicker crackers there because they take longer to cook. They’re still tasty when they’re burned, though, so don’t throw them away! They are quite crispy…just not quite as photo-worthy.

IMG_9073

Honey Cinnamon Graham Crackers

Yields: 2 dozen crackers (depending on size)

  • 4 egg whites, room temperature
  • 1 cup coconut flour, sifted
  • 1.5 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, softened
  • 1/2 cup raw honey, softened
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In one bowl, mix together dry ingredients (coconut flour, cinnamon, salt, baking soda). In a separate bowl, mix together softened honey and coconut oil until uniform. Add vanilla extract, mix until uniform. Add room temperature egg whites and mix until uniform. Once the batter looks thoroughly mixed, carefully sift in dry ingredients until a nice, smooth batter is formed.

Take out dough and roll into a ball on a sheet of parchment paper. Take another sheet of parchment paper and place on top of dough, and using a rolling pin, roll out dough until it is a little less than 0.25 in thick. Using a pizza cutter or other rotary cutter, cut crackers to your desired width. Also, use a toothpick to poke holes all over the dough.

Very carefully, using a thin spatula, transfer the cut crackers to your parchment paper. Roll up remaining dough and form into crackers until all of the dough is used. Since I am a perfectionist, I use the pizza cutter to force the leftover dough into nice rectangles, instead of raggedy-edged crackers.

Bake for a total of 18 minutes. After 9 minutes, switch racks so that they cook more evenly. Start watching them at 15 minutes to make sure they don't burn! Depending on how thick they are, they cook unevenly.

Let cool, then enjoy! Maybe with a cold glass of almond milk.

  • Preparation time: 20 minutes
  • Cook time: 18 minutes
  • Total time: 38 minutes

Sweet Potato Chips and Spicy Guacamole

I find that people tend to be passionate about sweet potatoes. Which makes sense, because they’re awesome. There are so many different varieties: Hannah, jewel, garnet, Jersey white, Okinawan, and my personal favorite, the purple sweet potato! I seriously eat purple sweet potatoes every single day with my breakfast hash. They’re the best, and when they’re in season, I buy them like I have foreseen an upcoming famine.

bowl_closeup

Our CSA box this week featured what I believe is the world’s most enormous sweet potato. I couldn’t figure out the best way to prepare it, then I thought it would be funny to make the world’s biggest chips. I did not really consider how difficult it would be to cut very thin, very large, round chips while I rocked the potato back and forth with my sharp chef’s knife. Thankfully, I only ruined a few chips, and somehow I did not cut myself! The key with these chips is to cut as thinly as possible safely, whether that be hand cutting with a sharp knife, using a mandoline, or using a food processor (I have yet to master this…somehow it’s always uneven).

guac_closeup

I find that since my tiny, pathetic apartment oven cooks so unevenly, that it’s difficult to gauge the appropriate chip cooking time and temperature should be. I usually say around 400 degrees is a good temperature, but unless I constantly open the oven and shift around the chips, the outer ones always get burned. I mean totally blackened (and mostly crispy, which is good, I guess). I usually cook them for 20 minutes, take them out, flip them quickly, and put them back in on the other racks for 20 more minutes. Sometimes it takes longer, and sometimes they’re already burned. I think I’m going to start using my oven thermometer more so that I can finally find the right temperature!

chips_main

I have made guacamole countless times, and each time it’s just a little bit different. Sometimes I add habanero peppers, or ground scorpion pepper, or a lot of cilantro, or some lemon juice, or even some other greens or herbs. This batch had rehydrated habanero peppers, so it was quite spicy. Feel free to switch it up with jalapenos or other types of peppers depending on your heat tolerance!

fullsetup

Crispy Sweet Potato Chips

These chips may take less time (or longer) depending on how accurate your oven temperature is. Mine is extremely inaccurate and cooks very unevenly, so it’s always a gamble when they’ll be ready. I keep an eye on them so they don’t get too burned!

Yields: Approximately 3 servings

  • 1 extra large (or 2 small to medium) sweet potatoes of choice
  • 2-3 tablespoons of coconut or avocado oil, melted
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon finely ground sea salt
  • Optional additions:
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Place parchment paper over two cookie sheets or baking pans.

Wash and scrub your sweet potatoes. Using a mandoline, a food processor, or your own hand and a very sharp knife, cut round chips as carefully and thinly as you can. I recommend wearing a cut-proof knife glove if you have one.

Optional: soak the cut chips in a bowl of ice water for 20 minutes. This apparently helps them crisp up, but if you don't have time, it's not absolutely necessary.

Put the chips in a bowl and toss with the melted oil and your choice of seasonings. Adjust seasonings if it looks like they aren't fully coating the chips.

Place the chips on the parchment-covered cookie sheets, and make sure they do not overlap! This prevents them from becoming crispy. After the sheets are filled (this may take more than one batch), put them in the oven and set a timer for 20 minutes.

Watch the chips to make sure they aren't cooking too quickly or unevenly. After 20 minutes, take them out and flip them carefully, then put them back in the oven again for 20-25 minutes. Watch them again to make sure they aren't browning too quickly, usually the ones on the outside of the pan cook much quicker.

They're ready when they nice, browned and crispy!

  • Preparation time: 30 minutes
  • Cook time: 45-60 minutes
  • Total time: 1 hour 30 minutes