It’s been months since I received a request for a recipe for gluten free oyster crackers. I finally had the courage to give it a try. With very few gluten recipes to go by, I am very happy with the results. I have provided dairy-free and vegan options, though the results will vary depending upon the ingredients you use. Mainly the browning amount will change. Though if you were to use whole milk, it would make them a tad bit softer, yet more flavorful. I have provided the ingredients I used, and in parenthesis the alternatives. Get that clam chowder ready for this fall and enjoy it with these gluten free oyster crackers!
My first thought was to use rice flour, along with tapioca and potato starch, but since I’m allergic to tapioca starch/flour, I substituted it with non-GMO cornstarch (Bob’s Red Mill brand).
Because most oyster crackers contain yeast, and some baking soda. I decided to use a recipe to adapt from The Cooking of Joy blog, Homemade Oyster Crackers, as it calls for baking powder which is lower in sodium than baking soda, and is yeast-free. I think the crackers shouldn’t over power a soup, as most soups are salty enough, anyway.
1/4 cup non-fat milk** (or rice milk or water for dairy-free)
Sea salt, for garnish (optional)
Add the flour, starches, baking powder, and xanthan gum to a food processor and pulsate until thoroughly blended.
Add butter or shortening and pulsate until it comes together in a couple/few balls.
Add the milk and blend, just until combined, no longer.
Form a square disc shape, place it in a bowl, cover, and refrigerate to chill, about 2 hours. Flattening it, versus leaving it in a ball helps it chill faster. If leaving overnight, bring to a pliable texture at room temperature. Do not bring to room temperature.
Preheat your oven to 350°F
Divide the dough into 2 pieces, and set the other piece back in the refrigerator to stay chilled.
Roll the dough out onto a sheet of parchment paper, to about 1/8" thick. and sprinkle with salt, if using.
Using a knife, miniature cookie cutter, or pastry tip (which is what I used), cut the dough into your desired shape, no larger than 1" wide. (I made 5/8" circles). Roll the scrap pieces into a ball and cut out additional crackers.
Using a knife or ice pick, prick each cracker once in the center.
By using a butter knife or knife, lift the scrap pieces and set aside as you go; transfer the cut out pieces to a baking sheet.
Bake for 10 minutes, or longer if making larger than 5/8" crackers, and until golden brown.
Once baked, transfer the oyster crackers along with the parchment paper to a plate to cool completely.
Repeat steps above for other piece of dough. Between the both dough pieces and scraps you should be able to bake them on 3 baking/cookie sheets. They don't spread, just rise.
Leave out at room temperature once cooled to dry out and become even more crispier. Store in an airtight container.
*Use Featherweight brand for corn-free.
**You may use low-fat or whole milk, but it will cause the oyster crackers to a tad bit softer. However, they will brown more. Butter creates more browning and more flavor. Shortening creates more crispness. In an ideal world you'd use half and half, as I did.