What you see here is Magnificence, Liquified. One-and-a-half sticks of All-Amerikun buttah, coddled and mollified over medium heat until coaxed into caramelization.
The entire aim of this process, these slight additions (dark brown sugar, AP flour, vanilla, salt. no more.), is to showcase. Tempting and beckoning are fruits, spices. But today is not a day for frills nor complications.
This process is from the internet. Vanilla vodka with a hint of amaretto complements our homage.
The raw goods have been resting in the cold, serene and congealing, for a matter of hours. It’s time, and we slice.
A dozen short minutes later, and our homestead transforms into altar. The golden discs crumble and crunch into nutty complexity, the butterfat core having evolved into much more than the sum of its lipid parts. The centers hang tight to a note of chewiness, a sublime marriage of salt crystals and butter rum. They are unsuspecting and unimpressive pre-bite, only blooming into Brilliance upon touching the tongue’s tip and expanding their butterscotch guile throughout the entire palate.
Browned Butter Sugar Cookies
not adapted whatsoever from A Warm as a July Tomato
1.5 sticks unsalted butter
1/2 c dark brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/3 c AP flour
healthy pinch salt
1-2 tsp water (optional, if dough is dry)
1. Brown butter over medium heat, stirring constantly, until milkfats have caramelized and your kitchen smells of absolute heaven. Let cool completely.
2. Cream butter with sugar and vanilla until smooth and a bit lighter in color.
3. Add in flour and salt; mix until combined fully into a crumbly dough, similar to pie crust. Add in just a touch of water if you live in a dry climate, or your dough looks especially fragile.
4. Roll dough into log shape in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 3 hours or so.
5. Remove dough from plastic wrap and cut into 1/4 inch discs. Bake at 350°F/175°C for 12 minutes, on parchment paper if you like. Let cool completely on pan before attempting to move.