Brown Butter Christmas Spritz Cookies
I generally like to make different Christmas cookies every year. It keeps it interesting for both me and the cookie eaters. However, sometimes a cookie comes along that people love so much, it needs to be made year after year. That is what has happened with this brown butter spritz cookie. You will need a cookie press in order to make these cookies. You can get them at any store that sells bakery supplies, kitchen supplies and even some craft stores like Michaels. It should cost less then $20 and if you have a coupon even less. The press will last you years and years if you treat it right...I didn't treat mine right and I am number two. The brown butter is what makes these cookies so exceptional. Just ask my grandfather. He thinks I should make a business out of making and selling these cookies. They are perfect as a side for your morning coffee.
#1 If the cookies aren't coming out of the press, don't keep squeezing the handle thinking they will. It could bust the cookie press (I know from experience). Instead add a little more moisture to your dough, like a tablespoon, and mix it in well. Then put it back in your press and try again.
#2 You can add sprinkles to the cookies before baking them if you want to add a little color to them. You can also tint the dough with food coloring before putting it into the press. After baking them you can put colored icing on them as well.
Makes 4-5 dozen
3 sticks unsalted Butter 1/2 c regular Sugar 1/4 c powdered Sugar 1 Egg yolk 1 tsp Vanilla 1/8 tsp Almond extract 2 1/2 c all-purpose Flour 1/4 c Cake flour 1/4 tsp Salt
First you need to brown the butter. This should be done a couple of hours before you make the cookies so it has time to harden back up. Place the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat until it is melted and light amber in color. It will start to smell nutty too. You don't want it to get black. That means it went too far and burnt. You are better off starting over if that happens. Put the butter in a bowl, cover it and put it in the fridge for about 2 hours until it is solid.
Once you are ready to make the cookies, take the butter out of the fridge for about 15 minutes to soften. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Beat the browned butter and both sugars with a mixer on medium speed until it is light and fluffy. Now add the egg yolk, vanilla and almond extract. Beat until it is well blended.
Combine both flours and salt in a small bowl, then mix it into the butter mixture.
Put a plate on the end of your cookie press and fill the press with cookie dough. Press the cookies out onto a cookie sheet about 1 inch apart. They don't expand much while baking. If they aren't coming out of the press right see my quick tip above.
Bake the cookies for about 10-12 minutes or until they are light brown. When you pull them out of the oven, let them cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes before moving them to a wire rack to cool. The cookies are fragile, so if you are giving them out, package them up carefully.