Knekkebrød or crisp bread is a staple food in the average Norwegian household. It is a form of flat bread, but probably resembles more of a seeded cracker. It is simply made with various (i.e. whatever you have on hand) seeds and grains, water and salt for taste. That’s it. An entire recipe of knekkebrød can be made in 30 minutes or less, including 20-25 minutes of baking time.
Knekkebrød is very quintessentially Norwegian with its no muss, no fuss production method, but admittedly has a has a long history rooted in making the best of the basic ingredients one has on hand. Eaten for breakfast, lunch or a snack anytime of day, knekkebrød can replace normal bread as part of an open-faced sandwich. I enjoy homemade knekkebrød more than the store bought varieties and tend to put butter and Jarlsberg on mine. I also enjoy my knekkebrød topped with a soft goats cheese like Snøfrisk and raspberry jam.
Dress yours up however you like, but be sure to let us know in the comments your recipe turned out.
*As this recipe can be sized up or down depending upon how much knekkebrød you want to produce at once, I’ve made a basic recipe in “parts” that focuses on ratios rather than specified measurements. If you want to make a larger batch, use larger volume measures (ml. or oz.) for each part.
1 part wheat flour
2 parts seeds or whole grains of your choice (sunflower, pumpkin or flax seeds + whole wheat berry, steel cut oats, rye, or quinoa are all good choices)
salt to taste
1 part water
1. Pre-heat your oven to 180 Celsius/350 Fahrenheit. Add all ingredients except the water to a large mixing bowl. Stir until the mix is fully blended.
2. Once all of the ingredients are stirred together, add the water – but slowly. This part can be tricky so add half of the water, stir a bit, then add more little by little. You want to final mix to be moist, but not overly wet else you’ll have to increase the baking time. No biggie – but save yourself the hassle of having to wait and slowly mix in the water.
You want the final product to look something like this. It should clump easily and resemble wet gravel.
3. Place the contents of the bowl on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and spread out the mixture as flat as possible.
4. Use the back of a rubber spatula or metal spoon to help get the knekkebrød as flat as possible.
5. Score the unbaked knekkebrød with rubber spatula or knife to make breaking it up after baking easier. Next, place the baking tray in the pre-heated oven and allow to bake for an hour.
6. Take the baking tray out of the oven and allow it to cool until it is easy to handle. Break into pieces, top with your favorite spreads like jam, soft cheese or with ham, salami, peanut butter or just plain butter and enjoy.