Knäckebröd Crackers

After being tired of not finding great Knäckebröd, Scandinavian Crisp Bread in the stores around my neighborhood in East Village, I started to make my own. Traditionally they are made as round wafers with a hole in the middle so you could store them hanging on a stick in the roof. They are often made with rye flour and rolled out with a special rolling pin with knobs. However I usually don’t use this tool and I like my home made knäckebröd as small crackers flavored with either or a combination of some: caraway seeds, fennel seeds, sesame and rosemary. My recipe is based on Alice Brax knäckebröd recipe.

25 grams fresh yeast
1 tablespoon honey
200 ml (almost 1 cup) kefir or yogurt
400 ml (1 2/3 cup) water
600 ml (2 ½ cup) rye flour
about 600 ml (2 ½ cup) regular flour

and later
100-200 ml ( ½ – 1 cup) regular flour
caraway seeds, toasted and crushed
fennel seeds, toasted and crushed
sesame seeds, toasted
dried Rosemary, crushed
flaky sea salt

Warm the yogurt with the water to 37°C (100°F). Dissolve the yeast in some of the warm yogurt mixture. Add the rest of the liquid and blend in honey and rye and regular flour. The dough will be quite sticky. Cover the bowl and keep at room temperature in a non-drafty area overnight or for at least 6 hours.

When the dough is ready, work in just enough of regular flour. Knead the dough on a floured counter top until the dough is smooth. Preheat the oven to 225°C (435°F).

Divide the dough into 15-20 equal parts. With your fingers sprinkle either caraway, fennel, sesame or rosemary together with flaky sea salt over each part and roll them into balls. Use a rolling pin and some regular flour to roll out every ball of dough very thinly. Using a cookie cutter or a sharp knife, cut into approximately 5 cm (2 inch) shapes. Place as many as you can fit on a greased baking tin. Bake the crackers immediately for about 8-10 minutes in the middle of the oven. depending on your oven you may have to turn them around to get nice all around color. When finished let the breads cool on an oven rack or a clean table. Keep the crackers in sealed containers.

This recipe was first published at Honest Cooking, 21 September 2011

Also check out my Wild Fennel Knäckebröd I baked in Sicily, with sourdough and Perciasacchi semola.

20 thoughts on “Knäckebröd Crackers”

  1. You are the answer to a prayer, I have one of the nobbly pins from my Swedish aunt, but my only attempt at baking these ended up in a burnt disaster. I’m going to try your recipe tomorrow. I have eaten very lovely handmade ones from Peters Yard in Edinburgh and those have honey in, so maybe that is the secret. Either way you are inspiring and as always the illustrations are wonderful 😀

  2. Thanks Joanna,
    just make sure to roll the dough really thin. They tend to get a little soft if they are thicker.
    Please let me know how it goes!

  3. Johanna! Thanks so much for this recipe – may I ask where you get your fresh yeast from? We are on the LES and used to be able to pick up squares from the East Village Key Food, but alas, they no longer sell it. 🙁

    We should meet up for a drink or fika one day! 🙂

  4. Hi style fare,
    I have bought it at Commodities Natural Market at first Ave btw 9 and 10. However its shamelessly expensive and haven’t been so fresh. My last time baking it in NYC I used ½ package of ¼ oz Active Dry Yeast. (I should add that to the recipe). Fika sounds nice :)! I will be back in the city next week.

  5. Hi Johanna! Love the recipe, but I have a question concerning the yogurt. In your drawing you show Kefir and the recipe it is yogurt. Does it matter which one I should use since kefir has a much thinnner consistency than yogurt? Thanks!

  6. Thanks Lucia,
    sorry for my mistake (I have corrected it). It works with either. You may need more flour when using yogurt, which you can adjust after the dough have riced and you start to roll out the dough. cheers

  7. Do you add the 600ml regular flour with the rye? Or only after the 6 hour rest? Thanks for clarifying!

  8. Hi Deb,
    yes you add the 600 ml regular flour together with the rye flour. Thanks for pointing out my mistake. I guess its because in Sweden I use “rågsikt” which is a rye/ wheat flour mixture.

  9. Dear Johanna,
    Thanks for the recipe! I’m desperately trying to find a kruskavel spetsig! I live in London UK and have searched online for a swedish shop that might post me one, but as I don’t speak swedish, I probably not very good at searching… If you happen to think of a shop that might post one, please let me know.

  10. Hi Diana! I’m afraid I don’t know where you could find them in London. But I will get back to you when I have found a place online.

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