Self-restraint has never been my strongest suit. I tend to embrace temptation with an open-armed hug of welcome. Hence my new affair with Cheddar Crispies from Evelyn’s Crackers. Yes, they have been around for years but I came to them only recently, spotting the Evelyn’s display at Sanagan’s Meat Locker in Kensington Market. They have become a primary indulgence, the star of our daily domestic happy hour, sharing the card table with the boardgame du jour, cold white wine and conversation.
What makes these righteous treats so compelling? The contrast of deep, rich flavours and brittle, slender texture. The taste of organic spelt and aged white cheddar with the perfectly judged prickle of paprika and some earthy, seedy spice that hovers just over the horizon of easy identification (see the comments below for ID). My wife and I have been known to share an entire packet when the Scrabble excitement becomes unbearably intense.
Husband and wife Dawn Woodward and Edmund Rek make them by hand in Toronto – very labour intensive – using real, local ingredients. You can find the whole story at evelynscrackers.com. There’s a video there in which Woodward vows to go on making them ’til the end of time (as George Michael put it, so eloquently). A promise that I cling to like a lifebelt in the dystopic tsunami of lifeasweknowit.