Rainier Cherry Compote w/ Arugula Goat Cheese on Chia Seed Crackers
Two months have passed since my last post, just enough time to move across the country from Missouri to California and get settled into a new job and apartment in Oakland. WHAT! Sometimes it's overwhelmingly new, and others oddly familiar, like an extended vacation that begins to turn ordinary as you return to a coffee shop for a second time or remember which streets take you back home. You know, I squealed out loud the first time I saw a lemon tree in someone's front yard a few weeks back. Lemons! Buckets full! At some point last year I found myself in a weighty conversation with a friend over favorite fruits and realized lemon tops my list if for no other reason that I use it more than any other. Why don't we just gift each other buckets of citrus at the holidays and spend our time together making preserves?
I've narrowed in on favorite grocery stores and farmers markets, but haven't eaten out too much yet, mostly meals in. There's comfort in the familiarity of this new apartment kitchen. With that, I'm falling back into rhythm of building recipes to share with you all.
I'll make a batch of crackers from time to time and have found them to be wildly convenient for a quick, sharable treat like this roasted cherry compote and arugula goat cheese combination. The crackers can be made in advance of a get together. -Mallory
Chia Seed Crackers
makes around 40 crackers
1 cup flour
1 cup semolina flour
2 tablespoons chia seeds
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cup water
Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large mixing bowl combine both flours, chia seeds and salt. Whisk together oil and water in a separate bowl then mix it into the flour mixture using a fork or pastry cutter, stirring until a dough forms and loose flour is completely absorbed by the liquid. Add additional water as needed, one tablespoon at a time to absorb an excess of flour.
Lightly flour your working surface, hands, and a rolling pin. Transfer the dough to your working surface and gently knead it a few times. Return the dough to a large bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let sit for at least 15 minutes to rest. Divide the dough into eight pieces. Work with one pieces at a time, keeping the remaining dough covered. Sprinkle your working surface with flour, then roll out the first portion until the dough is 1/8-inch thick. Transfer to a baking sheet and use a pastry wheel or sharp knife to cut the dough into rectangles.*
Bake until the edges begin to brown, about 4 minutes depending on thickness, flipping half way through. Transfer to a wire rack and cool completely before serving. Repeat with remaining portions of the dough. Crackers can be stored at room temperature in an air tight container and are best enjoyed within a week of making.
*Alternatively, divide the dough into 15-20 pieces and bake the crackers in small circles, rather than cut strips.
Roasted Cherry Compote
makes about 2 cups
1 tablespoon grated ginger
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon honey
2 cups rainier cherries
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Whisk together lemon juice, honey and grated ginger in a medium-sized mixing bowl, then set aside. Cut the cherries into half, remove the pits and transfer the cherries to the mixing bowl. Stir everything together until the cherries are well coated. Transfer to a sheet pan lined with foil or parchment paper. Roast the cherries for 10 minutes, until soft, then remove from the oven and let cool slightly before transferring to a serving dish.
Arugula Goat Cheese
makes about 3/4 cup
1 cup arugula
3/4 cup goat cheese, at room temperature
Finely chop the arugula and fold it into the goat cheese. Season with salt and pepper as needed.