Do not use shredded cheese that you buy in bags at the store for these. That contains wood pulp which will cause the recipe to fail. Maybe you don’t believe me so you’ll try it. If you do please don’t give up, go back and do it with real cheese that you shred yourself and see what I mean.

Get this stuff handy for making the dough:

8 oz sharp cheddar cheese
1 Cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 Tablespoons butter, cold, cut into 6 pieces
2 Tablespoons cold water (or 1 Tablespoon water and 1 Tablespoon Tabasco)

Making The Dough

1) Shred the cheddar cheese.

2) Put the shredded cheese into a food processor along with the flour, cornstarch, and salt. You may also choose to add additional dry seasonings at this point such as paprika, cayanne, onion powder, garlic powder, etc.

3) Process this mixture for about 30 seconds to combine everything.

4) Add the butter and continue to process until the mixture resembles wet sand, about 20 seconds or so.

5) Add water and/or Tobasco. Pulse the food processor until a dough begins to form, about 10 pulses.

6) Transfer to a lightly floured work surface. Divide the dough in half and pat each half into a square of about 6 inches or so. Just use your hands, no need for a rolling pin or other tools.

7) Wrap each square in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least an hour. Longer is better, up to two days.

Baking Crackers

1) Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats.

2) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

3) Unwrap each dough square and work them on a lightly floured surface with a rolling pin until each square is about 9 inches. They don’t have to be perfect.

4) Use a pizza cutter to cut the squares into 1 inch strips then cut those strips into 1 inch crackers.

5) Lightly salt the crackers then use a skewer or sharpened chopstick to poke a small hole into the center of each cracker. In that same motion you can transfer the cracker to the baking sheet.

6) Bake for about 20 minutes in the ceter of the oven. Bake them until they are a nice orange color but are just starting to darken. Remove from the oven and let cool on the baking sheet. You may wish to add more salt at this point, or not. Cool completely.

7) These can be left out at room temperature for up to a week. If you put them in a tightly sealed container they will lose their crunch, so don’t do that.