Sunday, February 2, 2014

Brown Butter Caramel Mocha Cookies

Brown Butter Caramel Mocha Cookies - made dough January 24, 2014 from Kevin and Amanda
I'm going through a purge on my pinterest boards - either I make something I've pinned or I delete the pin because I've pinned it from so long ago and if I haven't made it by now, I likely never will. Fortunately, this recipe fell into the former category. I needed to put up some cookie dough so I could bake off cookies later on when I needed it and this was one of the recipes I decided to try.
It also had the added advantage of using up some espresso powder I've had for awhile that might lose its flavor if I kept hanging onto it for much longer. Plus I had a nearly-forgotten package of caramel bits that I tend to buy and hoard like I do with most other baking ingredients. But caramel bits aren't something you want to hoard for too long as they do eventually get too hard to use without melting them with milk or cream.
If you like coffee, espresso or mocha-flavored cookies, this is a good cookie to make. They don't spread too much, are chewy and give a different twist to a traditional chocolate chip cookie. The only cautionary note is not to overbake them, not only because overbaking will dry out the cookie but also because the caramel bits will get too hot and become hard and chewy when cooled to room temperature. That's always a factor when baking with caramel but even more so in a cookie. As it is, when you form the dough balls, make sure no caramel bits are exposed at the bottom edges of the cookie They'll leak out of the dough and make misshapen cookies. Plus, the melted then cooled caramel will be too hard to eat. When I had that happen with a few cookies, I simply trimmed off the melted parts while the cookies were still warm.
2 sticks (1 cup) salted butter
1 1/4 cups packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoon instant coffee granules
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup caramel bits
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chunks
Coarse sea salt for sprinkling (optional)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Once the butter starts to foam, begin whisking constantly. When the butter turns brown, fragrant, and you see little brown bits at the bottom of the pan, immediately remove from heat and and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Set aside to cool.
  2. Meanwhile, whisk together the flour, coffee, baking soda, and salt in a bowl and set aside.
  3. With an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugars until well combined, about 3-5 minutes. Add the egg, yolk, and vanilla until well combined. Add the dry ingredients and mix on low-speed just until combined. Add the caramels and chocolate chunks and stir until just combined.
  4. Use a medium (1.5-tablespoon) cookie scoop to place dough on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes until edges just start to turn golden brown. Sprinkle with sea salt if desired. Cool on a wire rack.

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