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Spicy Crackers: Asian-Tasty Cream Crackers Recipe

This entry is part of a series, RdJ»

Hamster with Cracker

More than a year ago I introduced you to the spicy saltines craze. Since then I’ve mentioned a variation or two. They’re ridiculously easy to make, and even easier to make disappear. They go great with most any snack.

Their only drawback: They ain’t no stinkin’ diet food. I mean, anything where a pound of saltines absorbs ten ounces of canola oil, well, let’s just say that it only takes a few of these tasty flatbreads to blow the top off your calorie counter.

I still think they’re a great sports-show snack, or for making canap├ęs (that’s hors d’oeuvres for youse guys who don’t speak French), munching with a big bowl of chili, or even as a wedding gift. (Well, okay; about that last. I can explain. Later, maybe.) The oil that collects in the bottom of the box, that stuff’s good on cornbread, for disinfecting fishing gear, or as skateboard wheel lubricant.

I’ve been testing a variety of recipes for these yummy morsels, from extremely hot (seasoned with Kashmiri chile powder) to quite mild. What I’ve found is, you can put almost any spice powder in the oil and make a great snack cracker.

Which led me to my next breaktthrough: Asian-style spicy crackers. And not merely saltines in this case. No, I used cream crackers, like you find in Asian specialty markets. I like to have a small stack of these wafers whenever I indulge in a bowl of noodles. There are many kinds, but most Americans aren’t even aware of them. A couple of my favorites are Hup Seng’s Golden Selection and Fortuna. These crackers are square, larger than a saltine, and thicker too. They also have less salt and a bit more flavor. More oil, it appears. They’re a great switch from standard, dry saltines! Besides, how can you not like a food whose other name is Cap Ping Pong?

Cream Cracker

Here’s the flavoring mix I made this time:

  • 1 package Sun Bird Hot & Spicy Kung Pao Chicken Seasoning Mix
  • 1/2 package Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing Mix
  • 1 tablespoon dried Italian herbs
  • 1/2 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon Kashmiri chile powder (I can’t stay away from the stuff)

I mixed all these into 10 oz of canola oil in a big measuring cup. Using a tablespoon, I drizzled this concoction over cream crackers which were lying on a large baking sheet. I just kept coating and repeating until I ran out of oil mix; which was a whole pack of crackers, about 1.5 lbs of them. Which is about the same volume as a pound of standard saltines, by the way.

I stacked the coated crackers in my snap-top box and all I have to do for the next day or two is turn the box onto a different side every time I pass by it. By the end, the oil will be (mostly) absorbed and the spicy flavors will coat the cap ping pong beautifully.

Salmon Snack

I predict these will go great with pho ga or pho tai, or with Chinese sausage. Or chicken tikka masala bits and mango chutney. Heck, I intend to try them with many different Asian ingredients, fresh and pickled, to invent new appeteasers for upcoming parties.

If you try something like this, drop us a line here at the Underground and let us know how yours came out! We’re always interest to hear how experiments turn out; we’re science geeks around here, after all…

Enjoy the (Radical Asian-Texan Fusion) Heat!

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