They’re playing nonstop Christmas music on one of the radio stations in town already. Two days ago I woke up to snow covered ground for the first time this season. Yesterday they put the big Christmas tree up in the square outside of work. Looking out my window today, all the trees that were filled with beautiful yellow leaves just a few short weeks ago are now bare. All signs are pointing to Winter and the holidays barreling towards us at a rapid pace.
Even though I knew it’s been quickly approaching, I don’t feel ready.
This year we’re starting with a standard—Chocolate Chip Cookies. But these aren’t your run of the mill Chocolate Chips. There’s nothing boring or standard about these at all. They’re are my all-time favorite Chocolate Chip Cookies, all dolled up in a party dress and pearls for the holidays. Brown butter gives it a rich, nutty flavor while sea salt sprinkles give it the ultimate sweet/salty bite. They’re so good, they’ll charm the pants right off your holiday party guests. Or maybe that’s just the spiked eggnog. Either way, you can’t go wrong.
Brown Butter and Sea Salt Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adapted from Martha Stewart and Joy the Baker
Makes 2 ½ to 3 dozen
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, divided
1 ¼ cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon molasses
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 ½ cups plus 1 tablespoon cake flour
1 ½ cups bread flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 ½ teaspoons salt
½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/3 cup semi-sweet mini chocolate chips
¾ cup chocolate chunks
2 teaspoons sea salt, for sprinkling
1. In a small saucepan, heat ½ cup (1 stick) of butter over medium heat. Melt, swirling occasionally, until butter turns a dark golden amber color and smells fragrant and nutty. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
2. In a medium bowl, sift together cake flour, bread flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream remaining ½ cup (1 stick) of room temperature butter with brown sugar until lightened in color and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add cooled brown butter and granulated sugar and beat until combined and fluffy, another 2 minutes. Add egg and egg yolk, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla and molasses, beating until combined. Gradually add flour mixture until just incorporated. Fold in chocolate chips. Cover dough with plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator at least 30 minutes, up to overnight.
4. Preheat oven to 350F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners; set aside.
5. Using a heaping tablespoon or a 1-inch cookie scoop, roll dough into balls. Place dough on prepared baking sheet two inches apart and flatten slightly with your hand. Sprinkle dough with a pinch of sea salt. Bake, rotating pans halfway through, until golden brown, about 14 to 16 minutes. Let cool on pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.