Lindsay Ann Bakes: Brown Butter, Brown Sugar Cookies With Caramel Drizzle

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Brown Butter, Brown Sugar Cookies With Caramel Drizzle

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After sharing with you how to brown butter, the other day, it only seemed fitting to share a recipe that uses brown butter in it. For this recipe, I used my classic small-batch chocolate chip cookie recipe but removed the chocolate chips and browned the butter to really heighten the flavors!


Start by browning the butter. 

Place your butter on the stove in a saucepan (try using a light colored pan if it is your first time, so you will be able to see the color of the butter beginning to turn brown).


Over medium heat, melt whatever amount of butter you need for your recipe in a saucepan.




As it starts to boil, bubbles will appear. Keep stirring!


Continue to cook the butter until it starts to bubble up and foam. Constantly stirring or swirling the butter around in the pan until the foam starts to dissolve.



When you see brown specks start to appear at the bottom of the pan and your butter has turned a light shade of amber and gives off a warm nutty/toffee scented aroma (about 5 minutes for 1 stick of butter), your butter is starting to brown. At this point, do not stop stirring!


The shade can vary depending on how light or dark you want your butter. If you have burnt your butter, you will know by the scent and the amber colored specks at the bottom will have turned black.


Immediately turn off the heat and pour your butter into a shallow heat proof bowl. The butter will continue to cook in the pan so be sure to remove it, as the butter can burn very easily and turn from a perfect caramel scented brown hue to burnt and blackened within seconds!


Then, prepare your dough and bake.



I put my caramel  in a ziploc bag and snipped off the corner to pipe a pretty drizzle on my cookies. You can also use a fork or spoon to drizzle or spoon caramel on top.


Enjoy!


Brown Butter, Brown Sugar Cookies With Caramel Drizzle

Yield: 16 cookies

Ingredients 

Cookies
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick/4oz) unsalted butter, melted and browned
  • 1 1/2 cups (180g) all-purpose flour, weighed or spooned and leveled
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup packed light or dark brown sugar 
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • 1 large egg, room temperature 

Caramel Sauce
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup cream or half & half
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

Cookies:
First you need to brown your butter.  Over medium heat, melt butter in a small saucepan. Stirring constantly, continue to cook butter until it starts to foam. Keep stirring until brown specks start to appear at the bottom of the pan and butter has turned an amber color and gives off a warm nutty/toffee scented aroma. Immediately remove from heat and pour into a shallow heat proof bowl (do not over cook butter, it can burn very easily and turn from a perfect caramel scented brown hue to burnt and blackened within seconds! If you have burnt your butter, you will know by the scent). Place in the refrigerator to cool to room temperature and firm up slightly. 

In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside. With an electric mixer, beat together the butter and sugar, on medium speed for 2-3 minutes, until light and fluffy. Scrape down bottom and sides of bowl. Beat in the vanilla and egg. Slowly pour in the flour mixture, on low speed, just until incorporated. Scoop dough into balls (about 2-3 tablespoons each), cover, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 3 days. Dough balls may also be frozen for later use. 

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place dough balls onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, 2 inches apartBake for about 9-12 minutes, until edges just start to turn golden brown. Do not over bake. Cool on baking sheet for 10 minutes.

Prepare caramel:
In a saucepan, cook the brown sugar, cream, butter and salt over medium-low heat, whisking constantly for 3-5 minutes, until mixture thickens. Remove from heat, cool slightly and stir in vanilla. Refrigerate until ready to use. Drizzle over cookies. Store at room temperature in an air tight container.


Notes
  • Refrigerating the dough balls allows the flavors to intensify and time for the dough to absorb the moisture for a flavorful, hydrated and firm dough yielding rich, golden brown cookies that bake up thicker with less spreading. 
  • If you do not plan on making all of the cookies at once, the unbaked cookie dough balls can be can be placed in a ziploc bag and refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 3-4 months, to be baked in desired quantities. When baking cookie dough balls straight from the freezer, add about 1 minute to the baking time.
  • Baked cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for a few days or frozen for up to a few months.

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