Sea Crackers Recipe

On a recent cruise through a local bookstore, I picked up a cookbook titled “A Complete Idiot’s Guide to Eating Raw.” I figured that if I wanted to learn about a new subject, I might as well start with a title that resonated with my own personal level of knowledge.

Raw foods haven’t sounded so appealing to me. In my mind I have thought of soaked cashews pureed into pudding or some other less appealing manipulation of perfectly grill-able foodstuff. There is nothing culinary I won’t try, however, and I want to learn more about this subject. I like the idea of living food. As it is, we all eat living food every day by way of fresh fruits, vegetables, and leafy greens (except Neil, a beloved employee of mine who only seems to eat burgers and fries). But, eating a totally raw diet seems a little radical and limiting to me. Who can live without popcorn?

People eat raw food for different reasons – politics, health, and the opinion that living enzymes in non-heated food may aid in digestion. There are arguments for and arguments against consuming raw food as a complete diet and I am far too busy with our incredible Alaska summer to contemplate much about that. I just want to try a few recipes and weave some of the best of what the raw food movement has to offer into my cuisine.

The recipe I selected to start with is a type of cracker made with nuts, seeds and herbs.

I had to have a food processor to puree up the nuts and herbs and a dehydrator to “cook” the crackers. Those are heavy investment items but I had the food processor already and I have wanted to get another dehydrator for berry picking season anyway, so it was easier to justify the purchase.

Basically, the recipe involved soaking raw flaxseed (which I have a new affinity for) for several hours until the seeds exuded a kind of viscous coating that I suspect binds the crackers together. I also soaked sun-dried tomatoes in a little water that softened the tomatoes.

Next, I pureed a variety of nuts, herbs, dried fruit, and seeds into the blender. I added in the soaked tomatoes and its water and threw in some salt. After the blending process, I added in the soaked and mostly drained flaxseed, some sea lettuce we had harvested at last low tide and dried in the sun, and a little bit of soy sauce and chili powder.

I spread the mixture out onto a nonstick sheet that came with my dehydrator. My batch of cracker dough made enough for six sheets of crackers placed over three layers of trays in the dehydrator.

I dried the crackers at 115 degrees for about six hours. They were still sticky but I could handle them enough to flip them over.  I left the dehydrator running overnight. In the morning, the first thing I did, like an excited kid, was to lift the lid of my dehydrator and peer at my sea crackers. I cut them into several different shapes – round and square.  I think they are delicious.

Overall, despite needing some specialty equipment, making raw crackers with nuts, seeds, and herbs is pretty easy. I tried another variation with sesame seeds and sunflowers that I didn’t grind up and I love the extra crunch this adds.

The variations of this recipe seem endless: dried fruit, coconut, different types of nuts and seeds. I think it will be a great cracker addition to our repertoire, raw or not. The following recipe is loosely based upon a flaxseed cracker recipe included in “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Eating Raw” by Mark Reinfeld, Bo Rinaldi, and Jennifer Murray.

Sea Crackers
Makes about 32 crackers, depending on how you cut them.
  • 2 cups flax seeds
  • cup sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Sea salt to taste
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • cup mixed fresh herbs (I used parsley, thyme, oregano, and tarragon)
  • 1 cup dried seaweed (I used sea lettuce)
  • ½ cup sesame seeds
  1. Soak the flax seeds in water just to cover in a medium sized mixing bowl. Soak the seeds for about an hour or until the water is absorbed and the seeds are coated with a gelatinous coating.
  2. Place the sun-dried tomatoes, the water the tomatoes were soaked in, the sunflower seeds, the soy sauce, lemon juice, salt, pepper, cayenne, and the fresh herbs into the bowl of a food processor fitted with an S blade. Pulse several times until the mixture is pureed.
  3. Remove the puree from the food processor bowl and place the mixture into a large mixing bowl. Stir in the flax seeds and the sesame seeds.
  4. Spread the mixture evenly onto a nonstick dehydrator tray. Dehydrate at 115 degrees for about six hours. Turn the crackers over and continue to dehydrate for another six hours (or overnight like I did). Remove the crackers from the tray and store at room temperature in an airtight container for about two weeks.