Friday, August 12, 2011

Starfish Crackers

I love, love cheese crackers.  Especially goldfish crackers! It is no wonder that the kid loves them too.  However, looking at the long ingredient list from these goodies turns me off.  Thanks to the Smitten Kitchen, I found a way to make them at home.  The result, addicting! Now I had to buy car cookie cutters because the star shaped was rejected by the kid.

Starfish Crackers
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

  • 1 1/2 cups mixed cheese (cheddar, Monterey jack)
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup multi grain flour (I used Sujata)
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon table salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.  Add all the ingredients in a food processor until the dough forms (takes approximately 2 minutes).
  2. Roll out dough or chill to roll out later.  If you chill longer than 30-45 minutes, let it come somewhat to room temperature.  (I let mine chill too long and it began to crack as I rolled it out.)  Roll dough out to 1/8 inch thick and cut shapes using a cookie cutter.  I used a star shape as that was what I had on hand. 
  3. Transfer the crackers to a cookie sheet leaving about 1/2 inch between them.  Bake on middle rack for 12-15 minutes or until they begin to turn brown.  Remove from oven and cool on a rack.

Gavar shaak (Saucy cluster beans)

I happen to love gavar (aka cluster beans). I realize not everyone does, but thankfully my kid does! This gives me an excuse to make it when it's available at the farmers market.  And its available now until November!

Gavar shaak
Serves 2-3

  • 1/2 lb gavar (when cut up, approx 2 cups)
  • 2 1/2 Tablespoons besan (chickpea flour)
  • 2 Tablespoons of yogurt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ajwain
  • 1 Tablespoon finely chopped garlic
  • 1/8 teaspoon turmeric (haldi, harder)
  • 1-1 1/2 cup water
  • chili powder to taste
  • salt to taste


  1. Cut and wash gavar. Set aside.
  2. Mix the besan, yogurt, turmeric,chili powder (if using) and salt together. Make sure there are no lumps. I typically use a wire whisk. Add the water and mix thoroughly.
  3. Heat pressure cooker with oil and add ajwain seeds over medium heat. When seeds sizzle and turn brown, add the garlic and saute for 30 seconds. Add the besan mixture and cook for 2-3 minutes. If water evaporates too quickly, add a little more.
  4. Add gavar and mix together. Put lid on and cook for 7-8 minutes (without whistles) or for 3-4 whistles. The gavar should be softer but not mushy.  Enjoy with rice, khichadi or roti.