Friday, August 21, 2009

Browned Butter "Chewy"

I found this recipe, which was adapted from Alton Brown's "The Chewy", on RecipeGirl. I love her photos and almost all of her baked goods.

For some reason, her cookies came out bigger and flatter than mine. They also look darker. Next time, I will flatten the dough mounds before placing them in the oven, and I will darken the butter more. After doing brief research on browning butter, I read that the skillet should not have a black base because it will be hard to see how dark the butter is getting. In order to (attempt to) remedy that problem, I used my white rubber spatula to see how dark the butter was getting. It never became really dark, and I even put the heat on medium for about 5-10 minutes, so I just gave up and proceeded with the recipe.

Because I live alone and have started my diet AGAIN, I baked only 4 small cookies (the ones you see pictured) and froze the rest of the dough. I am an all-or-nothing dieter, meaning when I'm on a diet, I'm very strict with eating and exercise, and when I fall off the diet wagon, I fall off badly. I make up for all the deprivation and resistance to goodies that I did while on track. Consequently, I am trying to train myself to indulge more sensibly from time to time so that whenever I reach my goal, I will be better at maintaining instead of gaining all of the weight back.

As a consequence of gobbling up these cookies, I ate a healthy salad with Naked Juice (WARNING: a video starts up immediately on this site) for lunch/dinner. I plan to eat something else light later on. I also don't allow myself to eat after 9pm. However, if my stomach is really aching for something, I will eat a small plum or another piece of fruit. Later, I will do some serious cardio and strength training to burn off these yummy cookies. Ah, the price we have to pay to have our cake and eat it, too...and stay fit in the process...

On another topic, I finally got over my anxiety and stepped outside to take these pictures on my patio. I think they look much better than my previous pics, which I usually had taken inside and in the evening (yeah, bad combination, I know). I used the same camera and just added more of God's light and used my purple scarf as a backdrop, which yielded much better pictures. Right after I was done taking over 100 photos(!), I picked up the plate of cookies to bring them back inside when one of them fell to the ground (look below)! The cookie just smiled back at me (see the face?), I wiped it off, and gobbled it up gleefully and guiltlessly haha. Hey! You live only once! If I die over a fallen - a fallen, delicious cookie, then so be it! I will just die happy :).

Haha! Do you see the tongue sticking out on the right? Weird!

These cookies were so good. They were very soft. In fact, one of them wanted to fall apart, and I had to be very careful with it. My oven tends to overheat, so I always have to half the time indicated on a recipe. I also like my cookies to be really soft and not fully cooked, so I baked it for 5 minutes instead of 6.

You should definitely make these cookies. They really are good. I'm not able to say if I think they are better than the original "Chewy" because I forgot how the originals tasted, and I didn't brown my butter long enough. Nevertheless, they were very good, and I will make them again.

Adapted from Alton Brown and RecipeGirl

2 1/4 cups bread flour
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 sticks unsalted butter
1/4 cup white granulated sugar
1 1/4 cups dark brown sugar (packed)
1 Tbs half and half cream (or milk)
1 Tbs freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
2 cups chocolate chips (I used a combination of Guittard and Ghiradelli semisweet chips)

1. Sift together flour, salt and baking soda; set aside.

2. Melt butter in medium saucepan over low heat. Continue to cook on low heat, stirring often, until butter is browned. Turn off heat and stir in white and brown sugars.

3. Scrape into a medium mixing bowl and use electric mixer to cream the butter and sugars together. Add half & half, lemon juice, vanilla extract and eggs. Mix in until well combined. Add half of the flour mixture and incorporate into the batter with electric mixer. Add the rest and mix until thoroughly combined. Stir in the chocolate chips. The cookie dough will be very soft and buttery. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill until firm for an hour or two (I left my dough in the refrigerator overnight, and it was fine. Just let it sit on the counter for 10-15 minutes before scooping out dough).

4. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Scoop up heaping Tablespoonfuls of cookie dough and use your hands to roll into balls. Place 12 balls on a sheet, keeping about an inch and a half between each ball.

5. Bake 10 to 12 minutes, depending on how large you’ve rolled your balls (mine took 11 minutes).

Yield: About 2 1/2 dozen


  1. Wow, this brown butter chewy sound so delectable!

  2. Dieting is SO HARD. Especially so with cookies like those lying around!

  3. Elra - They are delectable!

    Oneparticular - Dieting is even harder if you enjoy baking and cooking your own yummy dishes. So far, I haven't been very tempted to take the cookie dough out of the freezer. That is why I baked only 4 small cookies and froze the rest. haha

  4. My turn! My turn! Even at this late hour, I can taste these cookies melting in my mouth right now! I would have picked up that cookie off the ground too, young lady! Such delectability should not go wasted!

  5. Your cookies look great to me! I love the purple background in the pictures!

  6. See, I always like the dough even better than the cookies. Dieting fail. ;)

  7. Ha, I did see a face and his tongue looked like he was licking his chops! :)

    Only four tiny cookies? Wow, self control. Wish I had some. Btw, these look excellent and like that they are NOT flat and that they are very soft! MMMMMmmmm

  8. These cookies look delish... I actually prefer thicker over spread out. Also, I know that navigating a diet can be tricky, and I give you credit for being aware of the cues that you fall victim to... However, one of the main pitfalls of diets in general are the unrealistic rules that they place. No eating after 9 PM? Good in theory, but really is just setting up for a binge. In reality, it doesn't matter what time of day you eat. It is more important to be aware of when you are really hungry rather than what time it is on the clock...


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