Here’s something that for all intents and purposes shouldn’t have a name, but when I go to post it I have to call it something.
We had an all-day meeting going over scripts/recipes/details of It’s Just Food, which we start shooting again in 6 weeks. (Gulp.) I was done around 5:30, but Mike ran into icy gridlock on the way to pick me up, and W had a five-alarm meltdown upon arriving back home and being wrestled out of his car seat (he had just fallen asleep), so by the time we got in the door it was after 7. Fortunately, I had an oh-so-attractive Ziploc baggie of salmon chunks tucked under my arm; leftovers from the event I cooked for on Saturday (at Willow Park, which owns the production company that does the TV show, which is where the offices are). I had this ambitous idea to make a noodle salad with the edamame I have in the freezer, but when I walked in the door and discovered there was still some cooked brown rice in the fridge; sold.
A hot skillet with a bit of butter and sesame oil, cold rice, a few stalks of chopped broccolini which I thrust into a bit of boiling water for a few minutes just to get it going, and some already cooked salmon chunks. A drizzle of soy sauce at the end and truthfully I thought it wouldn’t do much but fill the void, but it was pretty damn delicious. (W did not agree and ate pita pizza.)
The rosemary twists I didn’t make today; they were a test for a photo for an article for Dogs in Canada magazine (a crunchy treat that’s just as yummy for humans as for dogs) and they just happened to be on the bread box while I was cooking up the rice thingy. And it occurred to me that it might make a nice addition to cheese plates or served with wine this holiday season.
These crunchy bread sticks are quick to make and can be flavoured with almost anything; serve them in a tall glass or vase alongside a cheese platter, or tuck them into lunch boxes. I used rosemary and Parmesan cheese, but try any of the suggested flavourings or a combination of them, or experiment with your own additions.
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
flavourings: 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, 2 Tbsp. fresh rosemary, 1 Tbsp. pesto, 1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes (use their oil in place of the oil below), 1/4 cup pitted black olives, 1/2 cup grated sharp cheese, 1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese, 1/4-1/2 cup finely chopped nuts, 1 crushed garlic clove
3 Tbsp. canola or olive oil
1/2-3/4 cup water or milk
Coarse salt, for sprinkling (optional)
Preheat oven to 400°F.
Combine the flour, baking powder and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse to combine. Add any flavourings you like and pulse until chopped and blended in with the remaining ingredients. Add the oil and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal. (Alternatively, blend everything together in a bowl with a spatula or whisk.)
With the machine running, pour 1/2 cup of cold water or milk through the feed tube and pulse, adding extra if you need it until the dough starts to come together. This will depend on your flour and what flavourings you added; I usually need 1/2 cup plus about 2 Tbsp. of liquid.
Tip the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, gather it into a ball and let it rest for about 10 minutes. Roll the dough out about 1/4” thick, sprinkle it with salt (if you like), and roll lightly to help the salt adhere. Cut into 1/4”-1/2” wide strips as long or short as you like, then twist the strips and place them on an ungreased baking sheet, pressing the ends lightly onto the sheet if they start to unravel. Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until golden.
Makes about 2 dozen breadsticks.
Per stick: 51 calories, 1.8 g total fat (0.3 g saturated fat, 1.3 g monounsaturated fat, 0.2 g polyunsaturated fat), 1.2 g protein, 7.7 g carbohydrate, 0 mg cholesterol, 0.8 g fiber. 31% calories from fat