Monday, January 17, 2011
Brown Sugar Cookies
I almost passed these cookies by and that would have been a shame. Tracey raved about them, as did a few other bloggers. The first time I made them, I rolled them in sugar as directed, and they were too sweet for me. I now bypass that step (and reduce the sugar and brown sugar accordingly), but I'm giving you the recipe as written in case sweeter cookies are in demand with your tasters.
Brown Sugar Cookies
Adapted from Cook's Illustrated
14 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup sugar
2 cups brown sugar, divided
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons unbleached flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Heat 10 tablespoons butter in a deep skillet or large saucepan over medium-high heat until melted, about 2 minutes. Continue to cook, stirring constantly until butter is dark golden brown and has a nutty aroma, 1 to 3 minutes. Remove skillet from the heat and transfer the browned butter to a large heatproof bowl (for real - the first time I made these, my bowl cracked). Stir remaining butter into the hot butter to melt; set aside for 15 minutes.
Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats. In a shallow bowl or baking dish, mix the sugar and 1/4 cup packed brown sugar, rubbing between your fingers until combined well; set aside. Whisk the flour, baking soda, and baking powder together in medium bowl; set aside.
Add the remaining 1 3/4 cups brown sugar and the salt to the bowl with the cooled butter and mix until no sugar lumps remain, about 30 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula; add egg, yolk, and vanilla and mix until fully incorporated, about 30 seconds. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add flour mixture and mix until just combined, about 1 minute, making sure no flour pockets remain.
Using a medium cookie scoop, scoop out the cookies (you should get approximately 24 cookies, each about 2 tablespoons. Roll the scoops in your hands into balls about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Working in batches, toss balls in reserved sugar mixture to coat and set on the prepared baking sheet, spacing them about 2 inches apart, 12 dough balls per sheet.
Bake one sheet at a time until cookies are browned and still puffy and edges have begun to set but centers are still soft (cookies will look raw between cracks and seem underdone), 12 to 14 minutes, rotating baking sheet halfway through baking. Do not overbake.
Cool cookies on the baking sheet for five minutes before transferring them to a wire rack. Cool to room temperature. Makes 24 cookies.