This is not just an ordinary cookie. This beauty is a Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie. They’re thick. Soft baked. Chewy. Made with Brown Butter. Packed with chocolate. Topped with coarse sea salt. In one word: heavenly. It’s my most requested dessert from family & friends.
Like many other baking enthusiasts, I never stop trying recipes, even if I already have a favorite. I love chewy brownies. And I love box mix brownies. But I wanted to find something that I could call “THE BETTER THAN A BOX MIX” brownie, with easy ingredients that I probably have stashed in my pantry in case the desire for a brownie hits me at 9 pm on a Thursday night. (Not saying that happens….just maybe).
Y’all. I’m trying really hard to become a summer lover. Or even a summer liker. This season is really super duper hard on me. Maybe it’s because May through August in Alabama feels like the surface of the sun. So my solution for summer survival? Lots of reading, watching my favorite movies, crafting, and of course – baking. It seems counter productive to heat up the house with the oven while outside it already feels like an oven. But the kitchen is my happy place, and making pretty food, well that’s my jam. Bonus points if the food is made in gift-able form, like these mini blueberry zucchini bread cakes.
Well I’ve officially done it. I’ve created the best frosting I’ve ever had in my life. I’m a big fan of plain ole buttercream, but as I was preparing to make cupcakes, I decided to kick things up a notch. Instead of regular butter, why not brown butter? It has so much more richness and depth of flavor. And instead of plain vanilla extract, why not go with a stronger vanilla bean paste? Yes, I use vanilla bean in both the cupcake and the frosting! Check out those beautiful little specks. Brown butter & Vanilla Bean = a match made in heaven.
This pie might change your life. Okay, so maybe not your life. But the way you think about apple pie. Because this isn’t just any pie. It’s sour cream apple pie. Now hear me out….I’m sort of hesitant to admit this, but I don’t love traditional apple pie. I’ll eat it if it’s offered, but I won’t go out of my way to get to some apple pie. Until this one. I happened across the recipe in one of my favorite blogs to read (Posie Gets Cozy) and her description was enough to make me get out and gather the ingredients.
Here are some of the items I used for today’s recipe:
Soft and chewy homemade caramels. Think they’re impossible? Think again!!
Do you guys watch Alaska the Last Frontier? This is one of my absolute favorite shows. I love how the family tries to live off the land as much as possible, and when it comes to gift giving-well, their motto seems to be handmade is better.
Hubby and I have just finished binge watching the last season, and after watching their Christmas episode, it left me inspired to make more gifts from scratch, or either buy handmade (Etsy sellers, I’m looking at you!) rather than store bought gifts.
Since hubby and I aren’t really big on celebrating Valentine’s Day for one another, I normally wouldn’t think about trying to make something; however, HarperLinn loves Valentine’s! Since baking & treats are my thing, this year I decided to go Kilcher style and make Bill a gift that he was sure to love.
My goal: make caramels from scratch, and cover them with dark chocolate & sea salt. Piece of cake. Or candy. You know…lol
First thing you’ll want to do is gather all of your tools together.
- You’ll need a heavy bottomed sauce pan for the cooking. If your pan is too thin, the candy will likely burn. I used my tallest stainless steel pan because it is very thick & sturdy.
- 9 x 13 pan for pouring candy into. I used my pyrex dish.
- Foil or Parchment paper for lining pan (this makes it SOOO much easier to remove the caramels from the pan)
- Wooden or silicone spoon for stirring
- Rubber spatula (good for scraping the bottom and sides to get every last bit of yum in your pan!)
- Candy thermometer for measuring correct temp
- Wrappers for candy, or wax paper (optional)
Let’s talk Process:
Keep stirring and watching! Once your temp reaches 247 degrees, remove from heat and it’s time to stir in the vanilla and pour!
Once you’ve finished pouring, you should notice that the caramel is sticking to your spatula and starting to set. This is perfect!
Let the caramels cool for around 4 hours at room temp, and then remove from the pan and start cutting into squares. You can also put them in the fridge to cool quicker, but they will be harder to cut this way.
- 2 cups goat milk or heavy cream
- 1 cup light corn syrup
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup light brown sugar (not packed)
- 1 cup (1/2 pound) salted butter
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 teaspoons vanilla extract (to add at the end)
- sea salt (optional)-for sprinkling
- Gather all tools & ingredients before beginning.
- Butter or line a 9 x 13 dish with parchment paper or foil & set aside.
- Measure ingredients and pour all except for the vanilla into your heavy pan, and turn to medium heat. Using your spoon, stir mixture constantly while the sugar dissolves.
- Attach your candy thermometer to the side of the pan (make sure it doesn't touch the bottom!)
- Sit and wait! This is the part where it helps to pull up a stool and watch. The mixture will begin to boil and it will bubble up the sides a bit. I used my rubber spatula to scrape the sides and bottom.
- Stir frequently, and watch your thermometer. Once you get to around 230 degrees, things start to go a bit quicker. Don't be tempted to turn the heat up at this point!
- Continue to stir every minute or so until the temperature reaches 247. Remove from heat immediately and stir in the vanilla. It will hiss and pop, but keep stirring until the mix is smooth and vanilla is completely incorporated.
- Next, pour the mixture into your prepared pan. Use your rubber spatula to get those last bits. As your nearing the end, you should notice that the mixture is starting to set a bit, and sticking to your spatula. This is a good sign!
- Let the caramels cool for several hours at room temp, or if you're really eager, put them in the fridge.
- Once they're cool, remove from the pan and cut into squares & wrap. Or if you're making chocolates, click over to my other post and check these out!
Recipe adapted from Barbara Alpern