the (healthy) crackers

12 Dec

yelllooooo everyone ๐Ÿ˜€

Today I would like to share with you about crackers. Yup the Indonesian crackers or kerupuk. In Indonesia, you can get any kind of crackers. Like, seriously. Any kind. From prawn, fish, squid, rice crackers to cassava crackers. A lot! They also come in various shapes.

We, Indonesians, love crackers. We eat our meal with crackers. It can be any crackers, it doesn’t matter as long as it’s there. The crackers add the extra crunch needed to complement the soft texture of vegetables, the sticky warm texture of the rice and the chewiness of the meat. Not every dish comes with crackers, but I would say 75% of Indonesian dishes are eaten together with crackers. If you go to an Indonesian restaurant, there will always be crackers on the table (and also chilli sauce or ‘sambal‘). Yum!

Crackers are normally sold raw and then prepared at home (unless if you eat them in a restaurant). They are normally deep-fried in oil. The raw crackers are hard and dry. When it’s fried, it expands..almost double in size. The texture changes to crunchy! Kriuk kriuk..

In the image above are the raw crackers that are sold in the supermarket. It is prawn crackers on the left and fish crackers on the right. They are dry and hard.

Crackers are normally made of tapioca flour and the key ingredient. For example, to make prawn crackers, the ingredients used are tapioca flour and prawn flesh. The prawn flesh is normally minced and blended finely before it is mixed with the flour. The flour makes it doughy-like texture that can be shaped into a log. It is then steamed or boiled. After it’s cooked, it can either be air-dried or sun-dried. The traditional crackers are sun-dried but the modern crackers, especially when it’s made in a factory, are air-dried. At this point, after the drying process, it can be sold in the supermarket (just like the picture above!).

The problem is that most crackers are prepared by deep-frying. And we know that deep-frying is not healthy especially if you consume deep-fried food everyday. So, what do we do then?

Well, we can actually prepare them in the microwave. Yes, microwave!! Easy and simple! No oil splatter whatsoever. What you need to do:

1. Put the crackers on the plate inside the microwave. Spread them well (like picture below).

 

 

 

 

 

2. Set the microwave to HIGH, and set it to 1minute.

3. Depending on the crackers, it could take less or more than 1 minute (but generally 1 minute), so I normally wait and watch them. If they look done and black bits start to appear, just turn it off! It’s ready!

So guys, from now on, just microwave your crackers. It’s easy, fast and healthier than deep-frying them in oil. It only takes 1 minute!! It’s also fun to watch ๐Ÿ˜›

Unfortunately, I don’t have any information about the nutrition content of crackers. But I’m sure the microwave crackers have less saturated fat and cholesterol than the deep-fried cracker. I think it’s a pretty good alternative. The ingredients (from the package) are prawn/fish (depending on the type of crackers), tapioca flour, sugar and salt.

Just a few tips:

1. Keep them in airtight container to keep them crunchy and prevent them from going soggy (‘melempem’ ).

2. Leave the microwave door ajar after you cook the crackers so the smell (especially prawn and fish) doesn’t stay.

Have fun! Happy crunch-crunch ๐Ÿ˜€

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6 Responses to “the (healthy) crackers”

  1. Grace December 12, 2011 at 8:37 pm #

    Love the idea ๐Ÿ™‚
    Thanks for sharing.

    • Dea December 13, 2011 at 3:16 am #

      Thank you Grace! I hope others like it too ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. egomaniac December 13, 2011 at 1:33 pm #

    I did that years ago.. But I found sometimes the crackers won’t expand fully or evenly.. Most of the times some part is almost burnt while the other part is still raw & hard.

    And also I think the cracker made this way is somewhat too dry and taste different. I still prefer deep-fried cracker. I think the oil makes all the difference. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Dea December 14, 2011 at 1:59 am #

      Yes..sometimes it happens. that’s why I always wait and watch. the 1 minute is just a general rule, sometimes it needs more or less.
      The oil does make a difference! But this method offers people who can’t afford the excess oil, a very good alternative ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Ashleigh Stokoe September 15, 2012 at 3:19 am #

    Thanks for the great idea.
    I’ve been looking in all my local supermarkets for Tapioca Flour and i cant seem to find it any where!
    Any ideas?
    ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Dea September 15, 2012 at 10:45 am #

      You may find tapioca flour in Asian grocery store! And some supermarket also have tapioca flour under the name of arrowroot:) i hope it helps!!

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