Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge: Lavash Crackers

Lavash Crackers Ready to Eat

Flatbread is the star of this week’s Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge post, and these lavash crackers were fun and easy to make, beautiful to look at, and absolutely delicious. I have tasted the soft version of lavash before, but was completely unfamiliar with crackers like these.  The dough is very similar to pita dough, but it is rolled thinner and baked longer than pita.  The crackers can be left plain or adorned with salt, seeds and/or spices – I chose to use everything.  While not quite as crisp as traditional American crackers, the flavor was outstanding and they would make a perfect accompaniment to your favorite dip or spread.

I decided to give my stand mixer a rest and mixed and kneaded the dough by hand for a change.  I first mixed flour, salt, yeast, honey, oil and water with a wooden spoon until a ball of dough formed.

Mix the Dough

Then I transferred the shaggy mass of dough to a floured board and kneaded it for about ten minutes.

Kneading by Hand

The dough was rather firm and took a bit of elbow grease to knead.  But as you can see,  it was nice and smooth after ten minutes.

Fully Kneaded

It mostly passed the windowpane test.  If you look closely you can see that it’s tearing in spots in the middle, but it was good enough for me.

Windowpane Test

Although I sometimes forget (or just decide to skip it), I did remember to check the dough temperature this time.  It was a couple degrees cooler than it should have been, so I knew the dough would take longer to rise and planned accordingly.

Checking Dough Temperature

I placed the ball of dough in a greased bowl and turned it once to coat both sides with oil.  Then I covered it and let it ferment at room temperature.  The book recommends a 90 minute fermentation, or until doubles in size.  I planned on at least two hours since the dough was cool and the room wasn’t very warm.

Ready for Bulk Fermentation

After two hours, the dough didn’t quite look doubled, but I poked it with my fingers and it didn’t fill back in and I took that as a sign that I could move on.

Dough has Doubled

Now we get to the fun part!  I love rolling out dough, even when it’s a bit stubborn.  I had to let the dough relax a few times before it finally submitted.

Rolling out the Cracker Dough

I eventually got it rolled out into a big, thin sheet.  Now it needed to be transferred to a baking sheet and I was a little nervous about how that would work!

Rolled Thin

But the task wasn’t as daunting as it seemed, although the dough did shrink up and thicken a bit.  I trimmed off the excess so that it fit in the baking sheet perfectly.

Cut to Fit

My favorite part was decorating the sheet of cracker dough.  I used plain sesame seeds, toasted sesame seeds, nigella seeds, paprika, hot smoked paprika, cumin seeds, poppy seeds and kosher salt.  I thought the stripes looked really cool!

Adding Seeds

Finally, I cut the crackers diagonally into long strips before putting the in the oven and baking until crisp.

Cut into Strips

After the crackers cooled, I broke the long strips by hand into even smaller pieces.  They were beautiful and tasted great!

Baked Lavash Crackers

The dough for lavash crackers can also be used for regular pita bread.  I make pita bread at home fairly often, and I think I will use this dough next time I do.  The crackers had such a wonderful flavor, I can’t wait to see how the pita turns out!

Are you ready to give lavash crackers a try?  The recipe can be found on page 178 of The Bread Baker’s Apprentice. The next bread in the challenge is Light Wheat Bread, and I’m really looking forward to having some homemade sandwich bread in the house again!

Want to Join The Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge?

There are several ways for you to join in the fun!  First of all, you need a copy of Peter Reinhart’s The Bread Baker’s Apprentice.  Read the first section of the book carefully, as this will prepare you for the bread recipes in the second section of the book.  Then just jump in and bake some Anadama Bread, which is the first bread formula in the book.  You may also visit The BBA Challenge Page for more details on how to participate in the group.

If you haven’t already, you might want to bookmark the BBA Challenge Page.  From there you can see which breads are coming up soon, find answers to Frequently Asked Questions, visit and/or add yourself to our World Map, see the BBA Challenge Blogroll, and check out the continually updated slideshow of BBA Bread photos from our ever-expanding group of bakers!

Lavash Crackers from other BBA Bakers:

Please enjoy this slideshow of Lavash Cracker photos from the Bread Baker’s Apprentice Challenge Flickr Group.

  1. My Year on the Grill

    I have seen a bunch of these… yours is terrific!

    5:27 pm  Feb 5th, 2010
  2. Emily from

    Wow. Check out that window pane!

    6:35 pm  Feb 5th, 2010
  3. Katie

    Wow. These are beautiful. I made mine back this summer and had them with muhammara. If you’ve never had this, google a recipe and try it. It’s awesome. It’s a dip made from roasted red peppers and a bunch of other yummy stuff like pomegranate molasses. Mmm. As you can see I’m jumping around in the book. I made some biga yesterday for making the Italian bread today. Thanks again for thinking of this challenge. I’ve really been enjoying it.

    I blogged about the crackers here:

    4:45 am  Feb 6th, 2010
  4. Cindy

    Nicole, the opening photo of your post is just beautiful. The crackers look so good!

    7:30 am  Feb 6th, 2010
  5. Laura

    They look delicious! I love crackers, I have to try these.

    7:56 am  Feb 6th, 2010
  6. Kalyn

    Your lavash looks fantastic!

    10:49 am  Feb 6th, 2010
  7. Cookin' Canuck

    Great shot of the windowpane test! I really like the combination of spices and seeds you put on your lavash.

    1:07 pm  Feb 6th, 2010
  8. sugar plum fairy

    Beautiful picture perfect lavash crackers….ur pics are so stunning and fantastic explanation….


    2:27 pm  Feb 6th, 2010
  9. sugar plum fairy

    and so love the toppings too…sure that’ll be so muc fun too…………

    2:33 pm  Feb 6th, 2010
  10. SallyBR

    Yours turned out great! Loved the windowpane shot!

    the crackers are on my list of “do it again” – we loved them……

    3:06 pm  Feb 6th, 2010
  11. Abby

    So glad that you liked them, too! I know some people didn’t, but we’ve made them a couple of times . . . yum yum yum! Especially good with hummus or tzatziki! I posted here:

    7:37 pm  Feb 6th, 2010
  12. Sook @ My Fabulous Recipes

    oh this is such a great recipe! Bookmarked. 🙂

    11:30 pm  Feb 6th, 2010
  13. ap269

    Nice pictures, as always. Your crackers look really good. I agree on the pita bread – I had some crackers’ dough left and made a pita bread – that was heavenly!

    1:32 am  Feb 7th, 2010
  14. Di

    Looks great, Nicole! This one is up next for me, and I think I’m going to try it as pita bread (made crackers for DB). I love your stripes of toppings.

    10:25 am  Feb 7th, 2010
  15. Barbara

    Love lavosh! Never would have dreamed of making it though. Yours looks did a super job. The photos make me almost think I could make these…your idea of adding the toppings in stripes was brilliant!

    11:00 am  Feb 7th, 2010
  16. Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday

    i bought my copy of BBA today. i’m going to be joining the BBA challenge shortly!

    11:11 am  Feb 8th, 2010
  17. Monika

    These look so yummy! From someone who is still terrified of making bread and bread products, thank you for making it look do-able with such thorough pictures! I may just have to test my courage!

    12:05 pm  Feb 8th, 2010
  18. The Teacher Cooks

    Good job!! I love the stripes. By the way Who dat?

    1:34 pm  Feb 8th, 2010
  19. Janis

    Your lavash crackers came out nicely browned! You should try them with anise seeds as well…really tasty! Looking forward to seeing you complete the other breads of the bba challenge.

    4:27 pm  Feb 8th, 2010
  20. DavidM

    I’ve made these lavash crackers several times now, and they are easy to make and delicious — the “everything” versions don’t last long around here!

    A couple of things I’ve learned along the way:

    — The dough is amazingly velvety and easy to work. Don’t be afraid! Rolling it out, I was surprised by how smoothly it stretches, without breaking, tearing or sticking.

    — Even though I rolled the dough out to the dimensions called for in the recipe, my first batches were crackery on the edges, but pita-y in the center. So, I cut the dough in half, then rolled it super thin, beyond half of the original dimensions suggested for the entire ball of dough, and upped the oven temperature by an additional 50-degrees Farenheit. That helped a lot (although there were still some fully-cooked-but-bready areas.

    (Note: I haven’t cut them before baking, preferring the “broken-up” look — but might try cutting next time, to see if it helps get that edge-to-edge crackeriness I’m looking for.)

    Despite the fact that I haven’t quite achieved the desired perfection, they’re good enough to have replaced the wonderful pita chips sold by our neighborhood Middle Eastern Bakery. (But we still shop there for other favorites, at least once per week!)

    8:56 pm  Feb 9th, 2010
  21. natalia

    I love the way you decorated them !! It will be my next recipe so I’d better start !

    1:35 am  Feb 10th, 2010
  22. cheffresco

    I love this post! My roommate in college always used to bring lavash back from california. I’ve never thought of making it – I’m totally marking this one!

    5:28 pm  Feb 10th, 2010
  23. Adrienne

    I think I’ll make these for my get-together on Monday, I bet they’d be great with tapenade and hummus! Also, the light wheat bread made the best toast I’d ever had… until I made the multigrain bread. I have found my toast nirvana. I’m not actually signed up for the BBA challenge, but I’ve been cooking a lot out of the book in the last few months 🙂

    7:37 am  Feb 11th, 2010
  24. katy

    these look so great! mine always get burned in places, yours look perfect!

    7:29 pm  Feb 12th, 2010
  25. Kim

    This was one of the first things I tried making from “The Bread Baker Apprentice” I went mad looking for Nigulla seeds and my toping include them in addition to roasted cumin seeds caraway seeds and kosher salt.
    They kept for just about forever …Humm maybe I’ll make a batch for old time sake…It is after all Seville orange marmalade time

    8:06 pm  Mar 8th, 2010
  26. Lavender Discovers Lavash: It’s a Match! « Discover Lavender

    […] In pursuit of a lavash recipe, I turned to the internet. Googling “lavash recipe” returned more than 600,000 hits including a recipe on All Recipes and a link to a “Lavash-Making Challenge”.  […]

    10:02 am  Dec 12th, 2011
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