The Sensitive Kitchen

Friday, December 14, 2012

Browned Butter Spritz Cookies

My grandmother made these delicate little cookies every year for Christmas, although she didn't use browned butter in them. She did, however, make brown butter for dumplings and vegetables. Combining the two yields a tender, extremely flavorful cookie that melts in the mouth. It also seems the perfect way to remember her at this time of year.

3 sticks butter
1/2 c granulated sugar
1/4 c powdered sugar
1 egg yolk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
3 Tbsp milk
2 3/4 c unbleached all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
Colored decorating sugar (optional)

Heat butter in medium large saucepan over medium heat until completely melted. Continue to cook over medium heat; butter will sizzle as water cooks out. Stir occasionally. When butter stops sizzling, watch it closely. When color becomes golden brown and milk solids on bottom of saucepan are deep brown (do not let them burn), remove from heat. Strain into mixing bowl. Refrigerate 2 hours or until set. Remove butter from refrigerator; let stand 15 minutes to soften before proceeding with recipe.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat browned butter and sugars until light and creamy. Add egg yolk and vanilla; beat until smooth, scraping down sides of bowl. Add milk; beat to incorporate. Add dry ingredients; mix until well blended.

Press dough through a spritz press fitted with decorative plate of your choice onto parchment-lined baking sheets about 1" apart. Sprinkle with red or green decorating sugar if desired. Bake 8 minutes or until set and just beginning to brown. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 3-5 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack to cool completely. Makes about 4 1/2 dozen.

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