2000s Recipes + Menus

Brown-Sugar Brown-Butter Shorties

Makesabout 32 cookies
  • Active time:15 min
  • Start to finish:2 1/2 hr
October 2008
Our Six-Spice Hanger Steak uses only 2 teaspoons of brown sugar. These to-die-for little cookies are a great way to use up some of the remaining brown sugar before it hardens. We deepen the flavor of the cookies by first browning the butter until it's nutty and fragrant, then letting it chill again before blending in the rest of the ingredients. They come together in a trice, and, believe us, there's nothing better than a couple of these and a cup of tea on a gusty autumn afternoon.
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar (preferably dark)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Cook butter in a small heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until it has a nutty fragrance and flecks on bottom of pan turn golden, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer butter to a bowl and chill until just firm, about 1 hour.
  • Beat together butter and brown sugar with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy. Beat in vanilla, then mix in flour and salt at low speed until just combined. Transfer dough to a sheet of wax paper or parchment and form into a 12-inch log, 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Chill, wrapped in wax paper, until firm, about 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle. Slice dough into 1/4-inch-thick rounds, arranging 1 1/2 inches apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake until surface is dry and edges are slightly darker, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool.
Cooks’ notes:
  • For more decorative cookies, roll edges of dough slices in Demerara sugar or sanding sugar before baking.
    Dough keeps, chilled, up to 1 week.
    Cookies keep in an airtight container at room temperature 1 week.
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