Alright alright, so I’ve been real well-behaved over the past month, sharing healthy recipes and all that jazz. But it’s time to get back to the good stuff. The sweet, buttery, chocolate-laden stuff.
And I’m not sure that there are words for these little squares of delight. At least, no words that will do them justice.
Every so often, I try to do a clean-out of my cupboard. I always seem to have half-bags of a variety of chocolate, nuts, and other baking mix-ins hanging around. I had leftover dark chocolate and caramel left over from making my salted caramel bark over the holidays. I was very tempted to make another batch of the bark, but the previous batch had been a little too hard to resist, even from the depths of my freezer. I tend to lack willpower around frozen chocolate, what can I say?
Therefore, I was on the hunt for a new recipe. When I came across Deb’s recipe for blondies and realized that I’d never made blondies before, it was a no-brainer. The base recipe is great, and provides lots of room for switching up the flavors and mix-ins.
Friends, I have not been this excited about a cookie in a while. But these little things are AMAZING. First of all, we’ve got brown butter, which just seems to make everything a little bit better. Then we add in some toasted macadamia nuts for a little buttery crunch, chunks of caramel for a little chew, and some dark chocolate, just because. Oh, and then we add a sprinkle of coarse sea salt on top, just because I’m obsessed with that sweet/salty combo. #cantstopwontstop
It’s true what they say, blondies have more fun! But don’t take my word for it!
Brown Butter Blondies with Macadamia Nuts, Caramel, and Dark Chocolate (adapted from Smitten Kitchen)
These blondies are so adaptable to whatever mix-ins you’ve got on hand. Basically, you need one cup of mix-ins, so change it up and try out different combinations. Please note that I’ve also added the metric measurements for some of the ingredients. I have been using my kitchen scale more often in baking, simply because I find that it helps me to produce more consistent results. I recommend using a scale if you have one.
1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter
1 cup (238 grams) dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla
Pinch of sea salt
1 cup (125 grams) all-purpose flour
1/3 cup toasted macadamia nuts, chopped
1/3 cup caramel pieces (I used 8 Kraft caramels, chopped)
1/3 cup dark chocolate, chopped
Coarse sea salt, for sprinkling
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray an 8 x 8 pan with non-stick spray.
Toast your macadamia nuts – spread the nuts in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake at 350°F for about 5 minutes. Check frequently to ensure they don’t burn.
Brown your butter! Combine brown butter and brown sugar and beat together. Add the egg and vanilla and mix well. Stir in the sea salt, flour, and mix-ins. Press the cookie dough into the pan. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt (I used about half a teaspoon). Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until the edges are just beginning to brown and the center is set. Do not overbake! Allow the blondies to cool in the pan, then slice into squares. Nosh!
And if you want to be downright gluttonous, do what I did, and add a little drizzle of salted caramel. This is living, friends!