Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Cinnamon Graham Crackers

Cinnamon Graham Crackers recipe from cherryteacakes.com
 Hello, my name is Jana and I'm a Type A personality.

I'm trying not to be. I made chore-a-day schedule so I'd work less around the house....FAIL. My method for being less Type A is to create an organized schedule??? I think I need a be-more-slothful sponsor.

My five point plan to make my life like a vacation includes being a "slacker." One problem....slackers don't have five point plans! Type A over organized, workaholic, never say die types do. Can you feel the failure oozing off the screen?

I've been working on this plan for a few weeks now. Yes, working on a plan to not work. Awesome. On the ideal vacation I think I'd like to chill at a beach house, in a small little town. Ride a bike to a local ice cream shop, sit and stare at the ocean, read a book, have cook outs with friends, lay in hammocks, sip lemonade, fall asleep on the beach listening to the sounds of the waves....and the best parts: not doing my hair or make up or wearing "real" clothes, just swimsuits and cover ups and flip flops. I hear that on vacations you don't clean, you don't over schedule, you don't run from here to there all the time.....well that's the vacation for the people who aren't Type A. I tend to keep my blackberry in hand, check emails, schedule my leisure and feel awkward if there is a gap of nothing to do.

Since breaking my toe Monday, all thanks to the stupid blackberry, I've realized I've been talking a big game lately about the simple joys in life, but failing at the follow through. Something about running into a pole in downtown DC (while texting) just gives you a little wake up call. So, I'm gonna rewind and accept the truth. I'm Type A and focusing on small things that makes me happy might be harder than I've realized. Instead of thinking this through, I've turned to the internet to give me something simpler, like graham crackers with a glass of milk. I may not be able to force myself to chill out for reals without injury inducements, but I am able to make a graham cracker. It's reminiscent of those simpler times when the biggest trial of the day was digging the purple crayon out of the bottom of the crayon bucket. Well for you at least, I had pint sized panic attacks about coloring in the lines.

Help me. I'll share crayons, cookies, recipes, anything if somebody will be my sloth sponsor. :)

Cinnamon Graham Crackers
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

2 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup dark brown sugar, lightly packed
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt 
1/2 teaspoon ground Vietnamese cinnamon
7 tablespoons unsalted butter, frozen
1/3 cup honey
5 tablespoons whole milk
2 tablespoons vanilla extract

to garnish: 
3 tablespoons  granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground Vietnamese cinnamon

Combine the dry ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low to incorporate. Add the butter and mix on low until it resembles course meal.

In a small bowl, whisk together the liquids. Add to the flour mixture and mix on low until the dough barely comes together. Pour the dough out onto plastic wrap and form it into a one inch thick rectangle. Wrap the dough with additional plastic wrap and chill for two hours.

Divide the dough in half and return one half to the refrigerator. Flour a large work surface and roll the dough into a large rectangle about 1/8 inch thick. Flour the rolling pin as needed. Cut the dough into your desired shapes. For traditional crackers cut into 8x4 inch rectangles.

Mix together the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silpat mats. 

Place the crackers on prepared baking sheets and sprinkle with the garnish. Chill for an additional hour.  Gather any scraps together and pat into the other half of dough in the fridge. If you had additional cookies sheets, you can continue the process with the second half of dough.

Adjust the oven rack to the upper and lower positions and preheat the oven to 350°F.

If you are making a traditionally shaped cracker, make a vertical line down the middle of each cracker and a horizontal line down the middle of each cracker using the blunt end of a butter knife, fork prongs, or whatever suits you. For non traditional cookies, add lines or dotted indentations per your fancy.

Bake for 15 to 25 minutes, until lightly browned and firm to the touch. Cooking times will vary greatly depending on thickness, ovens, and pans used.

31 comments:

  1. Oo I love the type of vacation you described! I can be Type A, but at the same time I love getting away from my phone and the internet and going places like the bottom of the Grand Canyon (yes I've done that).

    And I want these graham crackers. The cinnamon ones were always the best!

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  2. So cute! What a fun idea. I have never thought of making my own graham crackers. Love it!

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  3. My boyfriend is just the same. We had to go to the other side of the world so he would stop checking his e-mail. (He would still manage to find wifi and check constantly...) Your graham crackers are so cute! I've used this recipe before, but I love the addition of all that cinnamon, yum.

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  4. I will be your sloth sponsor if you will be my type A sponsor. Shall we just email a goal to one another each day? Gosh I hope I'm not the only one who responds to this post this way....I betcha everyone else is going to say, "I totally know how you feel!" That's ok, I came to grips with that reality a while ago. Now on to the crackers.

    are these crackers soluble like a real graham cracker? I'm looking to make something that my teething 7 month old can handle and all the other grahams I've tried, while super yummy, are just too hard. He loves them but when he finally gets a chunk off, it's too big and hard and he gags..ok he chokes. I'm looking to put an end to that. ;)

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  5. Yum those look awesome! As another chronic over-organizer, I can just say there isn't much you can do... But try and take a break, at least for a few hours!

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  6. I love this post because I can relate completely. I am very A type as well and have began to accept the fact that may never change. I've accepted that if I can't just sit and relax, I can at least sit and read through 100 food blogs. Yeah, it's probably more so research for my own cooking and baking and blog, but I am going to call it relaxing! Does denial count for fixing atypeism? I wish I had the answers. I feel like no a type will.

    Sorry about your toe though. If it is any condolence it looks like you got a scrumptious little snack out of it! I definitely want to try this. It sounds so much better than the box variety. And gorgeous shot too!

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  7. Beautiful crackers! Home made graham crackers are on my list and these are now at the top! Your idea of a slacker vacation sounds AWESOME! I would love to do ALL of those things. I wish I could help with your sloth sponsorship, but I too am to much Type A. I would probaly make an organized list of how to help you. :) Good luck, let me know any tricks you learn on your journey.

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  8. These cracker look very yummy and I love your post. I am trying to make to be a better Type A person, and slowly slowly I feel as though i am getting better. Hope you can find the right space to really chill out in soon....

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  9. Awesome! I just made Martha Stewart's graham cracker recipe a couple weeks ago (kitchenhealssoul.blogspot.com/2011/05/homemade-graham-crackers.html). I can't wait to try yours to compare! They look great :)

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  10. Jana, what a gorgeous photo! Those graham crackers look scrumptious. Found you through Tastespotting. I'm a new fan! :)

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  11. Wish I could help with your slothfulness. Your crackers look great though! Hope you find your sponsor soon, and your foot feels better!

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  12. i LOVE LOVE LOVE this photo! it just screams summer to me :)

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  13. Well you could come over and lay on the beach here. You would learn pretty quickly to relax and do everything on Hawaiian time.

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  14. That sounds good~~ yum yum~~ Can't wait to try it...=]

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  15. I've always wanted to make my own graham crackers. Yours turned out perfect! Thanks for sharing :)

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  16. There is hope! http://zenhabits.net/control/ :-)

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  17. These definitely are a simple joy! I used to crumble up graham crackers and pour milk over them for my morning cereal! Strangely Yum. I definitely want to try these because I'm sure they will be uncomparable to store-bought, though I'm not quite Type A, so I will have to work up the energy to get started first... I think you need to find a sponsor who can bake!

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  18. Ooh, Jana, these look lovely! I'm so sorry to hear about your toe, though! Yikes!!! I hope it won't take terribly long to heal. Guess what?!?!? I'm flying to DC tomorrow night! Yup, graduation in the morning from college and then off to DC for five days for hanging out, wandering around, getting lost (hopefully more in the spiritual sense than literally and freaking out). I must ask you--how do you deal with the weather???? Coming from So Cal, I'm kind of bumming out about the weather, haha.

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  19. I wish we could all have a sloth sponsor. LOL
    And I wish we could all have these wonderful homemade graham crackers at the ready for snacking any time, any moment. Ahhh, life would be so good if both happened, huh? ;)

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  20. I'm a bit Type A as well, but I manage to waste *lots* of time looking at other blogs of delicious food so that helps. :) These look so fun! Love the straw in the milk. What fun colors! :)

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  21. Can't wait to try this recipe! I can't find real graham crackers in France and realized I just need to step it up and make my own!

    Hope your toe gets better!!

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  22. I LOVE homemade graham crackers! They blow the store-bought version out of the water!
    Good luck on your quest to take it easy:)

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  23. I'll be your sloth sponsor if you'll be mine - from one type-Aer to another, I totally feel your pain. We can share our lists about how to be more lazy.

    These crackers are absolutely lovely.

    And congrats on Top 9 - very well-deserved!

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  24. Hey Jana,

    You pic invited me from foodbuzz to your page here. Love that pic & the recipe. This is an interesting cracker to make. Deserves a try from me :)

    Keep posting,
    Rev
    www.relishdelish.blogspot.com

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  25. These graham crackers look awesome! And I hope you get the rest you so deserve =) And if you find the secret to no work and all play - fill us in!

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  26. I liked this post. Maybe I could be your sloth sponsor if you'd be my get cracking sponsor. I guess we both need keepers in different directions, eh?

    xoxo
    Cyne

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  27. I absolutely hear you on the Type-A planning-to-chill-out thing. "Spontaneously" whipping up something in the kitchen is about as good as it gets in this house. I've done the marshmallow gig, and I'm thinking these graham crackers look like a logical next step!

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  28. Congratulation on the Daily 9. You really do take beautiful photographs.

    Your Type A vacation sounds just like mine...complete with itinerary and awkward feelings regarding dead times.

    I have a 4 year old though, so slothing isn't all that possible. My advice sloth it up while you still can!!!

    Good luck...

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  29. I loove graham crackers and I looove cinnamon, so I bet these taste wonderful! :D

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  30. I really appreciate this recipe. I live in Mexico and can't find any packaged graham crackers. Many recipes I like call for graham crackers so I'm happy to have a reliable recipe to make my own.

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  31. Thanks so much for the recipe!
    Saluti da Milano (Italy)
    Giulia

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