Browned Butter Vanilla Bean Blondies
That’s it. I’ve had it. I’m moving to Florida. Anyone who says they live in New England because they “love the seasons” is absolutely bananas. You can say you love summer and fall, but no one in their right mind enjoys a Boston winter. I feel like a prisoner in my own house. I would rather poke my eyeballs with forks than shovel. And don’t even think about trying to move your car for the next two months. Southie Parking Wars is in full effect right now. The streets are scattered with trash cans, baby strollers, cardboard boxes, oh, and my Christmas Tree, which someone took out of my trash to save their spot. I will tell you a story later on in this post about my debacle with my car yesterday and why I am now going to be known as the crazy lady on East Third street.
But before that, let’s talk cookies. I like to make New Years Resolutions that I can stick to. Resolution #1: More browned butter. And while you all might be sick of 4 brown butter posts in a row, get onboard because this is going to be a theme for the next few months. In case you are scared at all about browning butter, I took some extra pics of that process to walk you through step by step. It’s really easy, so do not fear.
We had a home tennis match yesterday, which means we have to bring food for the snack table. I’m always in charge of the sweets. Although I wish I had forced my opponents to eat these before the match yesterday because maybe that would have slowed them down and we could have won. Instead we suffered a painful too-close loss by 1 game when the clock ran out. Anyways, after being snowed in Friday I made these at night because Francesca, Colleen, Riggins and I were having our regular Friday night vino and pizza. They were my taste testers and gave them the official taste tester A-OK rating. I saw this recipe on http://theblondebuckeye.com/ and made some adjustments to make it my own.
- 1¼ cups all-purpose Flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup brown sugar
- ½ cup butter
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- The inside of 2 scraped vanilla beans
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Brown the butter in a medium-size saucepan. Take the stick of butter and cut it into chunks. Melt over medium-heat constantly whisking.
First it will start to bubble. Keep whisking.
Then it will get wicked foamy (technical baking term).
Keep whisking until you see it change to this amber color and then turn off the heat, and use a spatula to transfer to a bowl, making sure to get all of the brown bits.
Step 2: Add the brown sugar and mix with the browned butter. Then transfer to the mixer.
Step 3: Add in egg, vanilla bean extract and vanilla bean and mix well.
Step 4: In a separate bowl sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Then add to the wet mixture and mix until incorporated.
Step 5: Add in the chocolate chips and beat lightly until well incorporated.
Step 6: Either line the 8×8 glass baking dish with parchment, or grease it up well with non-stick spray. Evenly spread the batter in the baking dish and bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes, just until the top is lightly browned.
Now for the hardest part. You need to let these cool before you cut into them.
In the BlondeBuckeye’s post, she mentioned that these taste like Mrs. Fields and I could not agree more. I will continue singing the praises of brown butter until I can bake no more. I figure my coworkers will be all healthy with their resolutions tomorrow, so the 8×8 dish doesn’t make too many of these (and Colleen and I obviously had to taste test one for quality control), so I cut these a little smaller, so those who want a sugar fix tomorrow morning will get theirs. I have to say, these are worth breaking any resolution.
The crazy man on our street is named Eddie. He lives next door to me, his backyard looks like a scene from Jumanji, I am fairly certain I’ve never seen him wearing anything but a wife beater and chain smoking, his idea of parallel parking looks like bumper cars, and he has an affinity for burning things in his backyard fire pit just feet away from our wooden fence on windy days. So, why am I going to be dubbed the crazy lady of East Third street? Friday I started to shovel out my car which was unfortunately parked in a spot that turned into the world’s largest snow drift. In addition to the foot on the ground, there was at least a foot of drift on top of my car. So I braved the negative temps on Friday night to try to free my car a little bit. Even started my car to warm it up. Saturday morning I decide I’m going to just give up my parking spot because it’s so sucky that I’d rather go to the main roads that had been closed during the snow emergency and would be easier to park on anyway. Only after spinning in the morning, I went to start my car and it was d-e-a-d. So after losing my tennis match in the afternoon, my 3 friends and I attempted jumping my car. Apparently 4 girls in tennis skirts and luxury cars looks like a disaster waiting to happen, so God sent a random tow man driving up the street at the perfect time. He just shook his head and told us to move over and he jumped my car in less than a minute. I love a man in a neon jumpsuit who breaks the law to fix my car. So then I run my car for a while and decide I am going to drive it to the dealership to get the battery checked. And this is where it gets interesting.
The big shovel was at my house down the street, but I had to keep my car running. So I took the shovel-made-for-ants out of my trunk and was trying to hack away at the stomach-high mounds of snow in front of and behind my car to make enough room to drive out of the spot. Still in a tennis skirt, my legs were frozen and I kept having to stand in the giant drifts hacking away wildly. But every time I went to move my car, it just made a weird noise and barely moved more than a foot. So after about 30 minutes of doing this, I was standing in the street with my tiny shovel crying not knowing what to do (other than making a mental note: get a boyfriend for the winter), and an old man walked by and said “hey lady, you’re gonna get fined $250 for putting snow in the street.” which then prompted me going bananas in my car. And then I realized, I had my emergency break on. Womp Womp.
So my revised New Year’s Resolutions: 1) Get a boyfriend for the winter who is apt at shoveling 2) Hire a chauffeur until April