Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies with Pecans

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Have you ever heard of Bloomsday? If you don’t live in Ireland, then the chances are slim. Every year on the 16th of June people, mainly only in two small coastal towns right next to each other, dress up & relive the events that occur in James Joyce’s novel, Ulysses. I happen to work in one of those two little towns, & this year I witnessed the madness at my first ever Bloomsday.

It has to have been the most stressful day at work I’ve ever had. Ever. In my whole life. When I say that people in two coastal towns dress up & relive the novel, I’m not just talking about a few die hard fans. I’m talking whole families coming down into the town dressed like they’re from the early 1900’s, people crowding into any little spot they can, just to have a glass of wine & enjoy the atmosphere, to carry on the tradition & experience it first hand, to see how many people can really fit into a tiny wine bar. It was mind boggling. I was stressed to my eyeballs. I’m sure it would have been lovely if I too were there for the occasion with my own glass of wine. But I wasn’t. I was on the other side, behind the bar, my back & feet screaming in agony.

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At the time, all I wanted to do was burst into tears, grab a few bottles of wine & be magically airlifted back to my house. & more importantly, to these cookies. If only things worked that way. These cookies would have made everything better. I would have been nice to customers & coworkers, I would have kept on top of my workload, I wouldn’t have been on the verge of tears for nine straight hours. That’s the kind of magic these cookies hold in every single bite. 

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They are by far the best cookies I have ever made. Actually, they’re the best cookies I’ve ever eaten. Better than the Blueberry & White Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies, better than the Banana & Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies, even better than the Peanut Butter Cookies. I know. But they really are. I wouldn’t lie to you. These are quite possibly the best cookies in the whole world. They have magical powers. The taste & the smell combined is overwhelming. It was almost too much for me to handle. Some sort of crazed lunatic took over my body & before I knew it I was finishing up my second cookie & reaching for my third. It was pointless trying to resist. 

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I blame the brown butter. You see, this was my first time baking with brown butter. I was unprepared. Sure, I’d heard the rumors of it’s nutty taste & fragrance, but I had no idea just how delicious it would be. When I was melting the butter down into it’s beautiful amber brown colour, it took everything I had not to try a spoonful or two. I won that battle. But the smell of the cookies straight out of the oven knocked my socks off. I’m not ashamed to admit that I lost that battle. If you’ve ever baked with brown butter, you understand. It smelled simply irresistible. 

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But the best thing? The taste. Everyone that tried the cookies, said they were amazing. 10/10 all around (except for The Boyf who gave them a 9.75/10 because he doesn’t want me to get cocky). If the smell is irresistible, then the taste is enchanting, scrumptious, seductive even. The combination of brown butter, dark chocolate chunks, and pecans is almost unbearably good. Too good. They’re rich, but not too rich, they’re flavoursome, oh so flavoursome, & they’re thick & chunky. They are by far, the best cookies I’ve ever had the pleasure to eat. 

Makes 18 (Adapted from Joy the Baker)

Ingredients 

  • 2 ¼ cup of plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla essence
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • ½ cup caster sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • ½ cup pecans, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chunks

Method 

  1. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, salt & baking powder. Set aside.
  2. Over a medium heat, melt ½ cup of butter over a medium heat. Once melted, it will begin to foam & crackle, & you should be swirling the contents occasionally. When the butter is lovely & fragrant & small amber brown bits form at the bottom of the pan, remove immediately. Pour the butter & the amber bits into a small dish & leave to cool slightly. 
  3. In a large bowl, cream the remaining ½ cup of butter with the brown sugar until light & fluffy. Add the vanilla extract & the maple syrup & beat until thoroughly mixed through. 
  4. Next, pour the brown butter & its bits, along with the caster sugar, into the creamed mixture. Beat until fully incorporated. Add the egg & egg yolk & beat in fully. 
  5. Add the flour mixture into the butter mixture & beat until just incorporated. Then, using a spatula, carefully fold the pecans & chocolate chunks into the mix. 
  6. Remove the cookie dough from the bowl, wrap in cling film & leave to chill in the fridge for at least half an hour. 
  7. Preheat oven to 160°C & line two baking trays with parchment paper. 
  8. Scoop dough by the two & a half tablespoonful onto the trays & flatten slightly, leaving at least 2 inches in between each cookie. 
  9. Bake for 15ish minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the oven & allow to cool for 5 minutes on the baking tray before moving to a wire rack to cool completely. 


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