Burnt-Sugar Vanilla Butter Cookies

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Doesn’t the name of this cookie want to make you drool?  I mean, VANILLA, BUTTER and SUGAR all in one cookie name!  That alone is swoon-worthy!

If you think the name is swoon-a-licious (I made that word up just now) wait until you taste it!  What you see in the name is what you get.  You can taste the vanilla and burnt sugar along  and with that you get the buttery texture with the crunch on top.  Now, do I have you drooling?

This cookie is reminiscent to a Crème brûlée with the burnt sugar on top.  Honestly, making this cookie was the first time I’ve ever used a kitchen torch.  *readers gasp* Yes, I the Domesticated Diva have never used a kitchen torch until now.  Well, at least I know I can probably make an actual Crème brûlée.  The hard part is the burning/torching of the sugar, right?!?

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Burnt-Sugar Vanilla Butter Cookies

recipe adapted from: fine cooking

Ingredients:

3 cups (13-1/2 oz.) unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. table salt
8 oz. (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1-1/2 cups plus 1/3 cup granulated sugar
Seeds scraped from 2 large vanilla beans or 4 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs plus 2 large egg yolks

Directions:

In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt.

In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Add 1-1/2 cups of the sugar and the vanilla seeds or extract and beat on medium speed until well blended, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs and yolks one at a time, mixing until blended after each addition. Add the flour mixture and mix on low speed until just blended, about 1 minute.

Turn the dough out onto a large piece of plastic wrap. Using the plastic as an aid, gently knead into a smooth dough (the dough will be soft). Shape into a 12-inch round log about 3 inches in diameter and wrap in the plastic. Cut an empty paper towel roll open. Gently rest the dough in the roll and refrigerate until chilled and very firm, about 4 hours. (The dough may be refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 1 month.)

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. Line 2 or more cookie sheets with parchment or nonstick baking liners. Put the remaining 1/3 cup sugar in a small bowl.

Cut the dough into slices about 1/4 inch thick. Gently press one side of each cookie into the sugar to coat completely. Arrange the cookies sugar side up about 1 inch apart on the lined cookie sheets. Save the rest of the sugar for decorating the cookies. Bake, one sheet at a time, until golden-brown, 11 to 14 minutes. Let the cookies cool on the sheet for about 5 minutes and then transfer them to a rack to cool completely. (The cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up 3 days before proceeding.)

Dip the sugared side of the cookies into the remaining sugar. Arrange the cookies sugar side up on a flameproof work surface. Pass the flame of a small kitchen torch over the cookie tops until evenly caramelized. Let cool completely, about 3 minutes, before serving.

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