Recipe adapted from my friend Lind Vaughan’s version of Benne Bits.
Prep time: 40 minutes, including 20 minutes for roasting seeds, plus 15-25 minutes to bake, depending upon size of crackers
- ¼ cup and 2 teaspoons sesame seeds
- 2 cups flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ¾ cup unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- ¼ cup plus one tablespoon of ice water
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Roast sesame seeds in a dry frying pan at medium heat, stirring regularly until seeds are browned and begin to give off a fragrance. Cool seeds.
- In a food processor, process flour, salt, cayenne and 1 tablespoon of the roasted seeds for 30 seconds until seeds are finely ground and ingredients are well incorporated.
- Add butter and process until mixture is crumbly. Add half of the water and pulse several times until combined.
- Add 1 tablespoon sesame seeds and rest of water. Process another half minute until dough begins to form.
- Put dough on a lightly-floured surface and roll out to ¼ inch thickness. When dough is rolled out, sprinkle surface with sesame seeds and roll into the dough.
- Cut out bits with a small cookie cutter (I made them in three sizes, but I prefer the smallest size because they’re more like eating cocktail peanuts than crackers, and people will grab a handful rather than just one.) and place on a silpat-covered baking sheet.
- Bake 15 minutes for the one-inch size benne bits, 20 minutes for the two-inch sized bits and 25 minutes for the 3-inch benne bits. Serve with cocktails.