Friday, April 5, 2013

Brown Butter Cinnamon Coconut Cookies

Brown Butter Cinnamon Coconut Cookies
Wanna know what I'm doing right now? Entertaining.
Michael's best friend/our high school junior English teacher (yes...his best friend is his former teacher), Scholl (or David...but I still can't call him by his first name :P) is visiting for a long weekend, and Michael is SO happy and excited! I'm pretty pleased too, Scholl is a really fun, super cool guy (and omg he has the cutest/smartest twin almost-4-year-old daughters)--apparently he is going to be cooking some Indian food for him and Michael while he's here, Michael is so spoiled!
Brown Butter Cinnamon Coconut Cookies
Anyway, I made these cookies about a week ago, but we used our self control to make sure to keep some of these leftover long enough for Scholl to have some (he likes cinnamon and coconut in cookies know...obviously).

Now, I know what you're thinking: "Kayle...there's no chocolate in these cookies"
I know.
Brown Butter Cinnamon Coconut Cookies
But these cookies totally are amazing, even without chocolate! I was incredibly intrigued when I saw the recipe on Carla's, Chocolate Moosey, blog. She promised "These coconut cookies are crispy on the edges and chewy in the middle. The coconut flavor is subtle with a burst of cinnamon goodness. I couldn’t stop eating them...They are sturdy enough to handle the trip plus they stay moist even after a few days. I know a couple of chocolate haters that would flip over a box of these. Even chocoholics like myself can’t say no."

So I said to myself, "Alright...I believe you. Let's do this."
Brown Butter Cinnamon Coconut Cookies
But you know...I had to mess with them just a little.

You've noticed I have an obsession with browned butter, and I recently realized (by reading Sally's Baking Addiction) that you can still use browned butter even if the recipe doesn't call for the butter to be melted. It seems to obvious, once you realize it: you can totally just chill the browned butter until it's solid or softened. Ha!

And then I was like...might as well toast up that coconut too, ya know? (Although I'm unsure if that really added anything to the flavor, you may just skip that step if you want).
Brown Butter Cinnamon Coconut Cookies
The end result were thick, chewy yet crisp cookies that have all the complexity of browned butter and the warm comforting flavors of brown sugar and a healthy dose of cinnamon. And the ever so subtle, ever so lovely coconut. These cookies have it all: amazing texture AND amazing flavor! Michael took a bite and said "Ew. These are bad. You should give me all the cookies so you don't have to be subjected to their grossness"

I'm on to you boy.

Make em. For serious.

Brown Butter Cinnamon Coconut Cookies

Brown Butter Cinnamon Coconut Cookies
Makes 1-2 dozen.
  • 1 and 1/4 cups all purpose flour (or you can use 1 cup AP flour, 1/4 cup whole wheat flour)
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, browned and then cooled until softened, not melted
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup shredded coconut (optional: toasted)
Brown Butter Cinnamon Coconut Cookies
  • If toasting the coconut, do so using whichever method you prefer. Here's one way.
  • To brown the butter: Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Whisk constantly as the butter foams and eventually little brown bits form. Immediately pour into a large bowl and then place in the refrigerator. It will take about 1 hour for the butter to reach a soft, but not melted, consistency. 
  • In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
  • When the browned butter has reached the right consistency, add the brown and granulated sugars to the large bowl and beat together for 2-3 minutes until creamy.
  • Beat egg and vanilla into the butter/sugar mixture.
  • Gradually beat the dry ingredients into the rest, forming a thick dough. 
  • Gently stir (or use hands if needed) the coconut into the dough.
  • Refrigerate dough until cold, for about an hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheet(s) with parchment paper or silpat (you'll need either 2 cookie sheets or use 1 sheet and bake in 2 batches:which is what I did).
  • Roll chilled dough into 1-2 inch balls (mine were the sizes of ping pong balls) and place about 3 inches apart on cookie sheet(s). If desired, you can freeze the balls for 15 minutes prior to baking.
  • Bake 10-12 minutes, until the edges are set. Let sit on the sheet for a few minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
Brown Butter Cinnamon Coconut Cookies
Beautiful little crackles of goodness.
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