Straight out of the oven, these delightfully cheesy crackers will be a bit chewy, but they'll crisp up as they get to room temperature. Either way, they'll be delicious!
Swap option: You can always use good Gruyere or aged Gouda instead of cheddar.
Place racks in upper and lower thirds of oven; preheat to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Grate the extra-sharp white cheddar cheese on the medium holes of a box grater into a medium bowl.2.
Add 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1/4 cup very thinly sliced chives, 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, ½ teaspoon sugar and a pinch of cayenne pepper to bowl and toss with your hands until all of the cheese is coated in flour.3.
Add 6 ounces of chilled cream cheese, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, and quickly smash into flour mixture with your fingers. Work mixture until only a few dry spots remain, then knead dough in the bowl to bring it together.4.
Seal dough in a 1 gallon plastic bag in a rough log shape. Roll dough over work surface to create a round shape. Then freeze the dough until it's firm but not frozen, about 15-20 minutes. Cut open the bag and remove.5.
Gently sprinkle 3 tablespoons of poppy seeds onto work surface. Roll the log over the poppy seeds, pressing to adhere, until the log is completely coated. Discard any extra poppy seeds.6.
Slice the dough into thin rounds with a sharp knife, aiming for even slices between 1/8-inch and 1/4-inch thick. Rotate log every few slices to keep bottom side from flattening out.7.
Transfer rounds to prepared baking sheets, spacing them about an inch apart (note that the crackers won't spread as they bake). Bake crackers, rotating sheets front to back and top to bottom halfway through, until golden, 25-30 minutes.8.
Commence snacking! Straight out of the oven, the crackers will be a bit chewy, but they'll crisp up as they come to room temperature. Let crackers cool completely on baking sheets, then transfer to a platter and serve.