When I was a kid, I used to request that my scrambled eggs were made with brown butter. Now, whether this was a mark of my impending food-blogger future or just a preference I developed due to my grandma’s propensity to burn the butter before she managed to get the eggs in pan, I’m not quite sure. But either way, I learned early on that browned butter is actually quite delicious.
And added to a chocolate chip cookie? Yes, puh-lease.
There are two elements about making chocolate chip cookies that I find absolutely and unnegotiably necessary:
- Speed. I will never wait 36 hours to bake cookies once I made the dough. Trust me, chocolate chip cookie dough will never last that long. New York Times cookie, I’m lookin’ at you.
- Butter. Never, never, never will I consider olive oil an acceptable substitute for butter in a CCC. It’s just not okay, people. Vegans, fine. Non-vegans–it’s just not right. They taste better and have similar caloric amounts. Olive oil or butter, you shouldn’t be eating a whole batch by yourself anyway.
Other than that, I’m pretty easy going about a chocolate chip cookie. I like ‘em chewy, crispy, cakey, with nuts, with spices, with oats, baked with peanut butter, or oats, in a box with a fox…
Sadly, I don’t really eat chocolate chip cookies that often. It’s mostly a self-control issue–I can rarely stop at one, and I don’t keep chocolate chips laying around in the house for the same reason. However, being at my parent’s house makes it a whole ‘nother story. Not only do they have chocolate chips (multiple varieties!), but I know that one batch of cookies will be eaten up pretty quickly, so my pathetic lack of restraint doesn’t matter all the much.
Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies (adapted from this recipe)
- 3 C whole-wheat flour
- 1 1/2 t baking powder
- 1 t baking soda
- 1/2 t kosher salt
- 2 sticks butter (I used salted, and cut out one t salt accordingly)
- 1 C brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 t vanilla extract
- 1 C chocolate chips (I used a mix of semi- and bittersweet)
With this recipe, let’s follow a “do what I say and not what I do” kind of rule. I got a little lazy and cheated, which led to a cookie that was more cake-like than chewy. Still really delicious, but for a more “cookie-like” cookie, follow the recipe as I write them.
First, brown one stick of butter. Over medium heat, melt a stick of butter in a saucepan (keep in mind that if it is a dark color, it will be difficult to tell between brown and black, so be vigilant). It will bubble, then foam, then start to turn brown. As soon as the color starts to change, take it off the heat and cool until solid. I did not cool it. My laziness=cake mistake. Just stick it in the freezer for a little while.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl, combine the cooled butter (unbrowned and browned) and beat until fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and mix. Combine the rest of the ingredients and continue to mix until just blended. Stir in the chips and breathe in the scent of that browned buttery, sugary, chocolately goodness.
I cut out a cup of sugar from this recipe because I really wanted to browned butter taste to stand out. It was a good choice, but if you want these cookies sweeter you can add more sugar (the original recipe suggested white sugar).
Spoon the dough onto a greased baking sheet, leaving a few inches between each cookie. I rolled the dough and flattened the ball a bit with my hand. Cookies that have been made correctly will probably flatten better on their own!
Also, a little baking tip: whenever I cook with butter, I save the wax paper the butter came in and use it to grease the baking sheets. Makes the browned butter cookie bottoms taste a little more like browned butter. Mmm-mm good.
Bake for 10-15 minutes on the middle rack until the edges and the bottom are golden.
Serve with milk, duh.
These cookies, even mine with their cake-like consistency, were heaven. They even smell like browned butter when you get within a few inches of them, and the taste really comes through.
Perfect for a rainy day at home.
And you know what? Who doesn’t feel completely comforted by the sight of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies cooling on the counter?
It doesn’t matter if you aren’t the best cook. Even my grandma’s burned scrambled eggs made one little girl very, very happy–and might have led her down the path to becoming a food blogger.