I had a ton of phyllo dough left over from baking this year. I had also thawed a little too much of it, so I had to find a creative way to use it. Having already baked many batches of palmier, I was fortunate to come across this technique for turning phyllo sheets into crispy crackers. After a few failures and some experimentation, the result is crispy, savory, and and sure to please.
- 8-12 sheets of phyllo dough, thawed
- 1/2 cup butter, melted
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 1/4 cup Parmesan or other hard cheese, fine-grated
- 1 tbsp sesame seeds (optional)
*NOTE: You will want to use a natural bristle brush as opposed to a silicone one, if possible.
Step 1: Layer, Layer, Layer
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
I prepare these on a full sheet pan I have "modified" to fit in my oven, so I can do the full recipe at once. If you are using standard half-sheet pans, you will be doing two batches.
Place a sheet of phyllo dough on a Silpat-lined baking sheet or jellyroll pan. Brush the top of the sheet lightly with butter. This is key. Too much butter and the layers will slide apart after baking, and the crackers will be greasy. Too little and the layers won't adhere. The phyllo dough shouldn't look wet or have puddles of butter on it. This is where a natural bristle brush excels compared to it's silicone brethren. Silicone brushes tend to put too much butter down, and can tear the delicate phyllo sheets.
Sprinkle with a small amount of the paprika and cover with a second phyllo sheet. Roll the top gently with a pastry roller to improve adhesion between layers. Repeat this process until you have 4-6 layers of phyllo dough.
Step 2: Top and Cut
When you have 4-6 layers of buttered phyllo, sprinkle the top with some more paprika and half of the grated cheese. Optionally sprinkle with sesame seeds.
Using a pizza cutter, cut your crackers into whatever shape you desire. I find that 2-3" squares or rectangles are the most appealing.
Step 3: Bake and Serve
Bake the crackers in the oven for 8-10 minutes, or until brown and crispy. Keep an eye on them, they can burn quickly. I usually keep the oven light on and start checking them every minute or so after they have been in for 6-7 minutes. Allow to cool for 3-5 minutes. Repeat for 2nd batch if necessary.
If you enjoy these, you might want to experiment with different seasonings, cheeses, etc... I like to do a spicy version with cayenne, cumin, and garlic.