brown butter and toffee chocolate chip cookies

August 1, 2018 Portland, OR, USA


Keeping today's post short and sweet: with the weather in Portland reaching constants of 95 degrees every day (we finally caved and bought a window AC unit for the bedroom — it's still not enough) and me baking and decorating the last of the pies and cakes for #weeknightbakingbook photo shoots, I'm burned out on all things baking. It's too hot, and I'm tired, lol. I do have some fun things coming up for you these next few weeks (specifically, a much requested pie lattice video tutorial and a giveaway with Le Creuset), but for now, all I have are these cookies.

I have this habit of bookmarking and dog-earing all the recipes I want to try making from various blogs, magazines, and cookbooks; of everything that I've marked, I probably have only baked and cooked about 2.93% of it (a very accurate estimate, apparently). These cookies were featured in Bon Appetit's Instagram feed forever ago, and with their big puddles of chocolate and promise of toffee chunks in every bite, I instantly bookmarked to try for later.


The problem was that the recipe used Skor chocolate toffee bars, which I'd never had in my life; I wasn't even sure where to get them, and I was reluctant to commit to buying a bulk bag from Amazon for a candy I'd never tried (because believe me, I have enough ingredients languishing away in my cupboards). Without easy access to Skor bars, the recipe remained bookmarked and forgotten. But a few weeks ago, as I was paying for my allergy medicine at the pharmacy, I saw rows and rows of Skors bars at the impulse buy section full of candy bars near the checkout — turns out they were there all along. Enjoy!

featured:

Some baker's notes:
  • I've left the recipe almost exactly as it's written in Bon Appetit, but IMHO, it needs more chocolate — most of my cookies didn't have any of the puddles of chocolate that I really like in chocolate chip cookies; I don't know if it's because I used milk chocolate and it blended in with the brown butter dough, but I definitely thought it needed something more. If you're a chocolate lover like me, I'd up the amount of chocolate to 10 ounces; I'd also use a mix of dark and milk chocolate for more contrast. For my version, I used Jivara milk chocolate feves from Valrhona, which is available online and at various Whole Foods. In a pinch, you can use your favorite milk chocolate bar chopped — I like Trader Joe's Pound Plus bars

  • If you can't find Skor bars, you can substitute with Heath bars or Trader Joe's Toffee Chips. Check the candy bar aisles of your local grocery or pharmacy though — it turns out both Skor bars and Heath bars are nestled there amongst the Twix and Kit Kat bars I usually opt for. 


Brown Butter and Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies
(adapted from Bon Appetit)

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Ingredients

For the Brown Butter and Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies:
(makes around twenty 4-inch cookies)
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) salted butter, roughly sliced into 1- to 2-inch chunks
  • 2 cups (9 ounces) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • "tightly packed" 1 cup (7.5 ounces) dark brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup (2.35 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 8.5 ounces milk chocolate feves (see baker's notes for sources)
  • 3 ounces Skor toffee bars (from about 2 chocolate bars, see baker's notes for sources), roughly chopped into 1/4 to 1/2-inch chunks

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Recipe

For the Brown Butter and Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies:
  1. Place the 1 cup butter chunks in a light-colored saucepan over medium heat. Cook, swirling the pan occasionally, until the butter starts to foam and splatter. Use a heatproof rubber spatula to scrape the sides and the bottom of the pan occasionally to prevent the butter from burning. A fter around 5 minutes, golden flecks should appear in the butter, and the butter should smell nutty and toasted. When scooped into a white plate, the butter should be a dark brown amberish color. Remove from heat and pour into a freestanding electric mixer bowl and place on a wire rack to cool slightly.

  2. While the butter is cooling, prep the rest of the ingredients. In a medium bowl, combine 2 cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, and 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt. Whisk to combine and set aside.

  3. Return to the butter and add 1 cup dark brown sugar, 1/3 cup granulated sugar, and 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract to the bowl. Nestle into the freestanding electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat on medium-high speed for 2 to 3 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Reduce the mixer speed to its lowest setting and add 2 large eggs, one at a time, only adding the next egg until the previous one is fully incorporated. Scrape down the paddle, and bottom and sides of the bowl. Turn the mixer back to its lowest setting and gradually add the dry ingredients, beating on low speed just until the dry ingredients disappear into the dough. Add chocolate feves and Skor toffee bar chunks and mix only until dispersed throughout the batter. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and transfer to the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes to allow the dough to thicken and hydrate.

  4. As the dough is chilling, center a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 375 (F). Prepare two half sheet pans by lining with parchment paper and set aside.

  5. Use a 4-tablespoon cookie dough scoop to portion out six cookies per sheet pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown and firm but the centers are still soft and gooey. Transfer the sheet pan to a wire rack and immediately sprinkle the top of each cookie with flaky sea salt. Allow the cookies to cool to room temperature on their sheet pan for at least 15 minutes, before using a metal spatula to turn them out onto the wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with baking process with the remaining sheet pan, portioning out the remaining dough and repeating the baking process until finished. 
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