Monday, September 19, 2011

Brown Butter + Cinnamon = Killer Cookie

Yes, I know. I've been gone a few weeks, but I'm back. A hectic month at work kept me away. Out of the kitchen? No way.

These dangerous cookies and a comment from my dear friend Margaret were what it took to get me back to blogging. They start with one of my favorite ingredients, brown butter. Now, when I make brown butter, I'm not content with some lightly colored solids at the bottom of my pan and pale butter. No, I take it to dark brown solids and a very brown butter. I think you get more of the brown butter flavor that way. They contain no chocolate or nuts so they're perfect for those who don't like "things" in their cookies.

These cookies were inspired by the Cook's Illustrated recipe for Brown Sugar Cookies, but I took them in an entirely different direction. They're easy, don't require you to have room temperature butter (a perfect last-minute cookie), and there's no chopping involved. Sweet! You can start the butter, and then measure the other ingredients while the browned butter is cooling. I scooped them out, left for two hours before I baked them, and they were fine.

Lethally Delicious Cinnamon Cookies
Printer-friendly recipe

14 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 3/4 sticks), divided
1 3/4 cups packed dark brown sugar (12 1/4 ounces)
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour (about 10 1/2 ounces)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon sea salt (table salt is fine, too)
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk

Heat 10 tablespoons butter in a deep medium saucepan over medium-high heat until melted, about 2 minutes. Continue to cook, stirring with a heat proof spatula until the butter is medium to dark brown and has a nutty aroma, 3 - 5 minutes. Remove pan from heat and transfer browned butter to a large heatproof bowl. Stir in the remaining butter into hot butter to melt; and set aside for 15 minutes.

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Whisk flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt together in medium bowl and set aside.

Add the brown sugar to the bowl with the butter and mix until no sugar lumps remain, about 30 seconds. Scrape down the sides of bowl with a rubber spatula; add egg and egg yolk and mix until fully incorporated, about 30 seconds. Scrape down bowl. Add flour mixture and mix until just combined, about 1 minute. Give dough final stir with rubber spatula to ensure that no flour pockets remain and ingredients are evenly distributed.

Scoop out the dough into 24 portions, and set on prepared baking sheet, spacing dough 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 feel well formed on the edge but centers will still be soft), 12 to 14 minutes, rotating baking sheet halfway through baking. Do not overbake.

Cool cookies on baking sheet 5 minutes; then transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely (they are also delicious slightly warm).


Choclette said...

Killer cookies indeed - love burnt butter (as we call it) and cinnamon, but have not had the two combined. Must rectify this omission.

Di said...

Well, now I know what I'm making tomorrow! =) I love the original brown sugar cookies, and I bet these are even better. And glad to see you back, Leslie!

Mimi said...

I could eat brown butter with a spoon and most of my favorite cookies are made with brown sugar. I can't wait to give your browned butter/brown sugar cookies a try.

Nancy/n.o.e said...

Brown butter and brown sugar sound like a killer combination to me. Welcome back to your blog, lol!

Tracey said...

Good to see you back Leslie! I haven't made anything with brown butter in a while, definitely time to remedy that :)

Anonymous said...

A lot of brown sugar + a lot of butter = tasty!! These sound awesome - putting them on my must-try list.

Jacque said...

Mmmm, those look absolutley FAB! I'm with you on the browned butter band wagon, love the stuff :)

Cindy said...

Nothing smells better than 'brown' butter! Glad your back.

TeaLady said...

Glad you are back. And the cookies look yummy!!

Cakelaw said...

These cookies look delish - a nice way to come back.

Rachel said...

these cookies look great and i love your plate--super cute!

Pamela said...

Something about these cookies is so very appealing and tempting to me. Must try!

Galexi said...

I love baking with brown butter, as you can tell (my last blog's posting), baking with brown butter is a recent discovery for me. I would love to taste one of these cookies w/a nice glass of milk.
Thanks for sharing. Jackie