Baker & Banker Bakery's Bake-at-Home Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Tamara Palmer
DiY: Baker & Banker's frozen cookie dough ($10).
Baker & Banker Bakery, neighbor to Lori Baker and Jeff Banker's restaurant, packs a lot of potency into a small retail space. Recognizing the addictive power of its cookies, B&BB now offers frozen dough to go in two varieties: ginger and brown-butter chocolate chip. For $10, you can bake up to a dozen small cookies in 12 minutes.

Cook E. Monster is a little bit more indulgent than that, so we grabbed a slab of brown butter chocolate chip and cut only nine big pieces to lay out on a cookie sheet. We also picked up a finished cookie from the bakery so as to be incredibly scientific about comparing their results with ours.

Tamara Palmer
Baker & Banker's finished cookie (left) and our overbaked but still great version (right).
Brown butter doesn't often turn up in chocolate-chip cookies. The technique of heating butter until it turns a deep and earthy color, and then separating out the milk solids for a silky, caramelized finish, isn't a practical one for mass-producing cookies, especially when quality standards for chocolate-chip cookies aren't usually all that high.

But, boy, does that extra effort make for something that can turn a bland standard into something worth examining with fresh taste buds -- even when it isn't done quite right. See, we kind of effed up our cookies because we were busy doing other things, just like you might be when trying them out. We accidentally set our hot-running oven a few degrees above the recommended temperature. And so our cookies didn't have the storebought batch's luxurious contrast of crisp outsides and chewy insides.

Even with the flub, they were good enough to disappear almost immediately. The dough is something we'd purchase again. And we could honestly take or leave an ordinary chocolate chip cookie.
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