Amelia’s Browned Butter Shortbread

Amelia’s Charlie McIntosh shares his recipe for a simple cookie with sophisticated flavor.


225 grams unsalted butter (the higher the fat content the better)
175 grams powdered sugar, sifted
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
250 grams unbleached all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon sea salt
Demerara sugar, for dusting


  1. In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium-low heat. Continue to cook the butter until it turns deep golden brown. Watch it carefully to make sure it doesn’t burn. Pour the butter into a bowl and chill until solidified.
  2. Let the butter come back to room temperature. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla extract and the salt. Add the flour and mix until just combined.
  3. Place the dough into an airtight container and refrigerate overnight.
  4. Preheat oven to 300 degrees and butter a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom.
  5. Remove the dough from refrigerator and press into the tart pan. Dock the dough with a fork and then sprinkle with Demerara sugar. Bake until lightly golden brown, about 1 hour.
  6. Cut shortbread into slices before it has cooled completely. The shortbread will keep for several days at room temperature in an airtight container.