I got to know  “Beautiful Disasters” through The Secret Recipe Club, when Casey,  a very fit and active high school student, made a recipe from my blog.  She hit the jackpot: her post was the most popular of our group!   I always look forward to her articles, not only for the recipes, but for the “Random fact of the day“.  Did you know that the average shoe size of a gorilla is 17?  Well, I didn’t, but learned on her site.  😉

Recently Casey wrote this enticing post about her favorite chocolate chip cookie, and the description and photos got my immediate attention.   At first glance, the recipe seems pretty straightforward, using the usual suspects for this traditional American favorite: butter, sugar, baking soda, walnuts, and chocolate chips.  But, what sets it apart is the browning of the butter, and the toasting & grinding of the walnuts.  Brown butter. Ground walnuts. Who would imagine they could make a simple cookie so decadent and delicious?
(from Beautiful Disasters)

1 stick (1/2 cup) butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1  + 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 +  1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1  + 1/2 cups chocolate chips
1 cups walnuts, toasted and ground
1-2 teaspoons of milk, as needed

The day before (or at least 3 hours before making the cookies), heat the butter over low heat in a small saucepan.  It will foam and bubble, slowly acquiring a tan color.  Keep stirring, watch it carefully so that the solids won’t burn.  Cook until the butter is a deep caramel color (it took me over 12 minutes).  Pour into a pyrex type dish, and refrigerate until  solid.

Heat the oven to 300 degrees F, and toast the walnuts on a baking sheet for 12 minutes, or until fragrant and starting to get some color.  Transfer to a small food processor and turn it on and off a few times, to grind the nuts.  Reserve.   (You can also finely chop them by hand, but it’s a bit cumbersome).

Cut the brown butter in small cubes, place it in the bowl of an electric mixer, and cream it with both sugars.   Beat in the egg, vanilla, and baking soda. Add the flour and salt, mixing gently.  Finally add the ground i nuts and chocolate chips. If the dough is too crumbly, add a couple of teaspoons of milk.

Scoop the dough onto cookie sheets lined with parchment paper, and bake in a 300 F oven for 18 minutes.  Let cool on wire rack.


to print the recipe, click here

These are some amazing cookies!  Hot from the oven, they were simply irresistible…  I had THREE cookies.  Now, keep in mind that when I make a batch of cookies I eat one, and  that is pretty much it for me.  I had three.  One, then another.  And then another. (sigh)

My moment of pure joy, on a Sunday afternoon…

A cup of steaming spiced almond milk….  (for recipe, click here)

With bites of insanely good chocolate chip cookies…

Thank you, Casey!  

ONE  YEAR AGO: Tidy Sourdough

TWO YEARS AGO: Vienna Bread

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