Saturday, September 27, 2008


The Daring Bakers challenge this month was to make Lavash Crackers and create a dip/spread/salsa/relish to accompany it. Our host was Natalie and co-host Shel. Please check out their websites as well as the other Daring Bakers Sites to find a variety of ideas. Part of the challenge was to make them gluten free if we chose to. Mine are not gluten free. Soon I will experiment with gluten free but for now I made them with flour as I needed a new item for a bread basket at work this season.

I made Black & White Sesame Seed Lavash with Chili Dip. I also sprinkled Fleur de Sel and Cayenne Pepper on my Lavash.

The recipe for the basic lavash was from The Bread Baker's Apprentice: Mastering The Art of Extraordinary Bread, by Peter Reinhart. Ten Speed Press, Berkeley, CA. Copyright 2001. ISBN-10: 1-58008-268-8, ISBN-13: 978-158008-268-6.

The recipe for the Chili Dip was from a friend of mine Phillis Carey. She is a cooking teacher extraordinarie!!

The key to a crisp lavash, to roll out the dough paper-thin. The sheet can be cut into crackers in advance or snapped into shards after baking. The shards make a nice presentation when arranged in baskets.

Makes 1 sheet pan of crackers

1 1/2 Cups (6.75 oz) Unbleached Bread Flour
1/2 Teasppon (.13 oz) Salt
1/2 Teaspoon (.055 oz) Instant Yeast
1 Tablespoon (.75 oz) Sugar
1 Tablespoon (.5 oz) Vegetable Oil
3 to 4 Ounces Water (at room temperature)
White Sesame Seeds
Black Sesame Seeds
Fleur de Sel
Cayenne Pepper
1. In a mixing bowl, stir together the flour, salt, yeast, sugar, oil, and just enough water to bring everything together into a ball.

2. Sprinkle some flour on the counter and transfer the dough to the counter. Knead for about 20 minutes, or until the ingredients are evenly distributed. The dough should pass the windowpane test (see for a discription of this) and register 77 degrees to 81 degrees Fahrenheit. The dough should be firmer than French bread dough, but not quite as firm as bagel dough (what I call medium-firm dough), satiny to the touch, not tacky, and supple enough to stretch when pulled. Lightly oil a bowl and transfer the dough to the bowl, rolling it around to coat it with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap.

3. Ferment at room temperature for 90 minutes, or until the dough doubles in size. (You can also retard the dough overnight in the refrigerator immediately after kneading or mixing).

4. Press the dough into a square with your hand and dust the top of the dough lightly with flour. Roll it out with a rolling pin into a paper thin sheet about 15 inches by 12 inches. You may have to stop from time to time so that the gluten can relax. At these times, lift the dough from the counter and wave it a little, and then lay it back down. Cover it with a towel or plastic wrap while it relaxes. If you have a pasta machine take small pieces of the dough and pass it through the machine, starting at 1 and stopping at 6. When it is the desired thinness, let the dough relax for 5 minutes. Line a sheet pan with baking parchment. Carefully lift the sheet of dough and lay it on the parchment. If it overlaps the edge of the pan, snip off the excess with scissors.

5. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit with the oven rack on the middle shelf. Mist the top of the dough with water and sprinkle a covering of both black and white sesame seeds, fleur de sel and cayenne. Be careful with the cayenne and fleur de sel - a little goes a long way. If you want to precut the cracker, use a pizza cutter (rolling blade) and cut 1 1/4" wide strips in the dough. You do not need to separate the pieces, as they will snap apart after baking. If you want to make shards, bake the sheet of dough without cutting it first.

6. Bake for 12 to 18 minutes, or until the crackers begin to brown evenly across the top (the time will depend on how thinly and evenly you rolled the dough).

7. When the crackers are baked, remove the pan from the oven and let them cool in the pan for about 10 minutes. You can then snap them apart or snap off shards and serve.
3/4 Cup Mayonnaise
1 Tablespoon Rice Wine Vinegar
1 Tablespoon Chili Paste with Garlic
1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
1 Teaspoon Toasted Sesame Oil
1 Tablespoon Minced Fresh Ginger
1 Tablespoon Sugar

In a small bowl combine all the ingredients, and whisk to blend well. Cover the bowl and refrigerate overnight. Serve with crackers and/or vegetables.


Lauren said...

Ooo, your lavash looks wonderful, and the dip sounds great!

Clumbsy Cookie said...

Thy're perfect looking. Two sesames is alleays better than one!

Helene said...

The beauty of black and white sesame seeds...Gorgeous! Love the dip!

Lulu the Baker said...

I love the long, thin lavash. Beautiful!

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