Anchovy crackers with sesame seeds
These salty crackers go perfectly with pre-dinner drinks and, it goes without saying, perfect for a party, as our experience shows, no one can resist them. We kind of prefer the simple version of them but you could make them herbal (adding just 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves to the dough, for example) or hot and spicy, substituting the black pepper for dried chili flakes.
Makes 36 crackers
Preparation and baking time: 20 minutes
130g plain flour 60g freshly grated Parmesan cheese 20g anchovy fillets in oil 2 tbsp olive oil (I used the oil from the anchovies) 60g butter ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp sesame seeds
Process the anchovies with the oil in a food processor first. When the fish fillets turn into a creamy mixture with no lumps, add the rest of the ingredients. Dice or grate the chilled butter before adding it. Process until the mixture comes together into a soft dough.
Press the dough into a ball, wrap it in clink foil and chill for 20 minutes, until it has firmed up slightly.
Meanwhile preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas mark 6. Lightly grease two baking sheets or line them with baking parchment.
Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to about 3mm (¼ inch) thick and cut into rounds using 3cm (1¼ inch) cookie cutter. Press the dough trimmings together and re-roll to make more rounds.
Sprinkle over the crackers some sesame seeds, if you like.
Arrange the rounds on the baking sheets and bake for about 6 to 8 minutes, until golden. Leave the crackers for few minutes on the baking sheets, and then transfer to a wire rack to cool.