Start to Finish: 45 minutes
Servings: 30 to 40 chips
Soy chips, known as senbei in traditional form, show that the simplicity of Japanese cuisine extends to its most basic of preparations. Soy chips are made with rice flour — or a combination of rice flour and soy flour, but you get the most crunch with rice flour alone. If you have an aversion to gluten, substitute tamari, a gluten-free soy sauce, for regular soy sauce.
(Recipe adapted from “Ivy Manning’s Crackers & Dips: More Than 50 Homemade Snacks,” Chronicle Books LLC, 2013)
- 1 1/4 teaspoons soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons mirin
- 1 teaspoon finely ground sea salt or kosher salt
- 3/4 cup sweet rice flour
- 1/3 cup cooked white rice
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 2 tablespoons furikake (optional)
Heat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix the soy sauce and mirin in a bowl and set it aside.
Pour the salt, rice flour, cooked rice and oil into a food processor. Pulse the ingredients until they are finely ground.
Add the water, while running the food processor on low, until crumbles form, about 1 minute. Transfer the crumbled dough to a mixing bowl with the furikake, if using.
Mix the dough to incorporate the seasoning, and transfer it to a lightly floured work surface. Knead the dough until you can squeeze a clump together and it holds its shape without falling apart. If neecessary, add a few drops of water to make the dough cohesive.
Set a large piece of plastic wrap on the work surface and lightly flour it. Cut the dough into quarters and place one quarter of the dough in the center of the plastic wrap. Lightly flour the top of the dough.
Cover the dough with a second large piece of plastic wrap. Next, roll out the dough to about the thickness of a nickel or thinner. Peel away the top sheet of plastic wrap.
Line two sheet pans with parchment paper. If you have only one sheet pan, cook the chips in batches, reusing the same pan. Cut the rolled-out dough into rounds using a 3 1/2-inch cookie cutter.
Peel the dough rounds gently from the plastic wrap and transfer them to the sheet pan. Space the rounds about 1/4 inch apart. This dough is delicate; if you tear a round, shape it into a ball and roll it out again.
Repeat the rolling and cutting process for the remaining three-quarters of dough and the leftover dough scraps. Place the sheet pan on the middle oven rack.
Bake the soy chips until the edges brown, about 6 to 7 minutes. Turn the chips over and bake them until they sizzle, about 5 minutes.
You can substitute up to half of the the rice flour called for in this recipe with soy flour. However, the crackers will have less sheen and less crispness than those made with 100 percent rice four.