The Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie…Pt 1: Brown that Butter

I like to get fancy with my baked goods.  I dream up flavor combinations like lavender and chocolate, Biscoff and cream cheese, matcha powder and dark chocolate. I have star anise and rose petals in my pantry and a Momofuku inspiration gets me every time. But sometimes keeping things simple is the best practice, whether it be with an outfit, a recipe or a life decision. Call it the wisdom of growing up, or a reaction to all of my crazy experiments (baking and otherwise), but either way, I’m going back to the basics. I am on a quest for the perfect chocolate chip cookie.

The Perfect Chocolate Chip CookieJust because something is classic or simple doesn’t mean there isn’t room for variation. There are countless chocolate chip cookie recipes out there, all with noticeable differences be they subtle or obvious. So, for my own personal baking growth and for an excuse to bake excessive amounts of cookies, I have been trying out all sorts of chocolate chip cookie recipes. My goal is to find the best of the best and share them with you.

Truth be told, I am stealing the idea for this cookie quest from one of my favorite food bloggers, Joy the Baker. She did a similar series awhile ago. I loved the concept but thought it was missing some essential varieties. So for my chocolate chip cookie exploration, I am adding a few more recipes that interest me (including vegan, sugar-free and gluten-free options). Stay tuned over the next couple of weeks to see them all.

Without further ado, let’s kick off our chocolate chip journey with the first rendition: the brown butter chocolate chip cookie.

Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie_The Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie_Elizabeth SenskyUnlike the traditional chocolate chip cookie practice of whipping softened butter, we use melted, browned butter for these bad boys. Doing this adds a rich, caramel-like depth to the flavor.

To brown butter, you simply heat butter on the stove until it begins to brown and turns a nice amber color. That’s all there is to it. The only tricky part is making sure you keep a close eye on the butter to catch it before it begins to burn.

As you can see from the picture, these cookies even take on the color of caramel. They are light, slightly crispy and a sprinkle of salt on top brings out the sweetness of the dark chocolate.Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie_The Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie_Elizabeth Sensky_2

Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies_The Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie_Elizabeth SenskyWhat really took these cookies to the next level, was an exquisite bottle of homemade vanilla extract contributed by my wonderful neighbors. Just look at that bottle (apparently it was a wedding favor)! So, no pressure if you don’t happen to have one of these hanging out in your cupboard, I’m sure regular vanilla extract will do just fine. But if you feel like going all Martha Stewart, I can assure you it will be worth your time.Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie_The Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie_Elizabeth Sensky_3To get an accurate flavor profile for each variety of cookie I try, I’ve been asking my roommates (who are thrilled by this cookie quest of mine) for their descriptions.

Here’s what they had to say about the brown butter chocolate chip cookie:

” This is the perfect cookie.”

” It has an airy texture, more artisan like, caramely and lighter.”

There you have it. I was very pleased with this variation of the classic chocolate chip cookie. You’ll find the recipe below (from the one and only, Joy Wilson) if you feel like giving it a try yourself.

 

[gmc_recipe 1668]

 

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