The Bonne Femme Cookbook: Simple, Splendid Food that French Women Cook Every Day
I saw tons of recipes that were perfect for entertaining in this book by Wini Moranville, who brings the spirit of the French lifestyle with her recipes inspired from spending summers at her house in France for the past 15 years. The easy techniques and speedy preparation will have you choosing to make one recipe after another. The following recipe would be a welcome hostess gift, or be great to have on hand for the holidays—the crackers keep for a week refrigerated (tightly covered), or up to one month in the freezer.
Makes about 24 crackers
1 cup shredded Comté, Gruyère, or Emmental cheese, at room temperature (about 4 ounces)
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley or chives, or a combination
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
1 tablespoon ice water, plus more if needed
1. In the bowl of an electric mixer, mix the cheese and butter on low speed until combined. Add the herbs, salt, cayenne pepper, and a few grindings of black pepper; mix briefly to combine. Add the flour and mix until crumbly. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the walnuts. Sprinkle the ice water over the mixture and toss with a fork to combine. If needed, add additional water, 1 teaspoon at a time, until the dough clings together.
2. Gather the dough into a ball, place the ball on a clean, flat surface, and shape it into an 8-inch log. Wrap the log in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours and up to 24 hours.
3. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper (or lightly grease them).
4. Using a very sharp knife, cut the log into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Place the slices 1 inch apart on the sheets and bake until golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool the crackers on the sheets for 1 minute, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.