Earlier this week I shared a recap post about my visit to NYC with Robert, Kelsey and Abby. One of the places we visited that quickly rose to the top of our favorites list was Butter and Scotch, a bar and bakery in Brooklyn. Abby, Kelsey and I were all in heaven at that place. It was so fun and laid back, the whiskey was flowing, we were gorging on impeccable desserts, the music was fitting my mood, the bartenders were badass ladies having a great time at their job … You get the picture. Kelsey and I purchased their cookbook while we were there, and that just helped to fuel our love for the place.
When we returned to our respective homes after our weekend in NYC, we couldn’t stop texting each other about how much we loved the place and how great the cookbook was. Abby realized she should have bought herself a copy as well and needed to get one ASAP, and we made plans to do a collaborative post inspired by that cookbook, which is what this is right here. Ta-dah! The three of us are all posting today with recipes inspired by our love for Butter and Scotch (and their cookbook).
Kelsey is sharing the recipe for the Unicorn Treat on her site, Appeasing a Food Geek. It’s a brown butter cookie (with sprinkles) we had while we were there, and even though it looked like a humble cookie compared to the pie and cake we were also eating, it ended up being our favorite of the three desserts we tried that night. We were sad to find out that it wasn’t in the cookbook, but the bartenders that night suggested we just email the owners for the recipe. So Kelsey emailed them and they totally delivered! (This just made us love them even more.) So she’s got that special recipe for you on her site.
Abby is sharing the recipe for a peanut butter chocolate pie with a Rice Krispies crust on her blog, Heart of a Baker. I was eyeing that one in the book myself, so I can’t wait to see her take on it. I’m telling you – the cookbook and the place it represents are SO FUN.
As for my recipe, I’m going boozy. I really wanted to make something that captured their spirit of cocktails + dessert, so I have a very dessert-like cocktail for you today. It’s actually based on the one I drank while I was there, the “Rita and Bernie,” but with a bit of a twist. That cocktail uses this trick of “fat-washing” liquor, which they used to infuse scotch with brown butter. (That’s a major reason why I ordered that drink in the first place.) For my adaptation I infused bourbon instead of scotch with the brown butter, I used a different kind of bitters, and I added some pear nectar for a flavor boost and a bit of sweetness. The result is a perfect dessert cocktail – it tastes like you’re enjoying a piece of pear pie and washing it down with a glass of bourbon. But yet it’s not too sweet, either. This is a cocktail to be savored in place of a dessert, or perhaps with a cookie by your side.
The nice thing about infusing bourbon with butter is that it’s a double whammy – You get butter-infused bourbon out of it AND some bourbon-infused butter. To throw that leftover butter away would be a sin. In the book they suggest using it for their chocolate chip cookie recipe, which uses brown butter. I took their advice and tried it with MY chocolate chip cookie recipe, which also uses brown butter. (To use it for my recipe, remelt the butter to a liquid state before adding it to the batter and you can skip the ice cube step.) The result is a chocolate chip cookie with quite a bourbon kick. To be honest, it was a little too bourbon-y for my tastes. My dad LOVED them, but if I did it again I would probably do half bourbon butter and half regular. Other options for using it would be to melt it and pour it over popcorn or use it on some pancakes. (I bet my dad would love that, too … I should try that.) I bet you could also use it in Kelsey’s recipe for the Unicorn Treat cookie.
This post was super fun to work on, and I love that Abby, Kelsey and I took our passion for this boozy cocktail heaven and turned it into blog posts together. It’s one of my favorite things about blogging, and it’s great because it means I get to share the things I love with YOU. I hope you get a chance to try out these recipes and have a little dessert/cocktail party of your own. Don’t forget to check out Abby and Kelsey’s posts as well:
PS – One of the ingredients in this cocktail is Amaro Nonino. It’s something I picked up recently so I would have the ingredients on hand to make a Paper Plane, one of my new favorite bourbon cocktails. My local wine and spirits store didn’t have it since it’s kind of obscure (and PA is super weird about alcohol anyway …), but I was able to special order it through the store at no extra cost. I just had to wait a couple days for it to be delivered to the store and then go pick it up. If you live in another state you might just be able to order it online somewhere (what luxury), but if your local shop isn’t carrying it, don’t be discouraged – just ask at the counter and maybe they can order it for you like mine did. That being said, you could probably swap it out for a different Italian amaro, but they all have their own characteristics so it might change it a little bit.
Happy baking and boozing!
Illustration at top created with Illustrator and Photoshop.
Prints of my illustrations (along with other products with my work on them) are available in my Society6 shop.
- ½ lb unsalted butter (2 sticks)
- 12 oz bourbon
- 1.5 oz brown butter bourbon
- 1.5 oz pear nectar
- 0.5 oz Amaro Nonino
- 1-2 dashes of Orleans bitters (sometimes called "Peychaud's")
- lemon peel (for garnish)
- Place the butter in a medium skillet over medium heat. Melt down and cook the butter, stirring constantly with a whisk, until it foams and bubbles and smells nutty. As soon as you see the butter solids turning a beautiful brown color in the bottom of your skillet, turn the heat off and continue to whisk for 30 seconds to a minute. This whole process should take 5-10 minutes. If it seems to be taking too long, you probably need to turn up your heat a little bit. Just be careful not to burn it. As soon as you see that color on the bottom, get it off the heat.
- Pour the bourbon into a wide-mouthed freezer-safe jar. Pour the brown butter in there as well and stir it all together. Let it sit at room temperature for one hour.
- After the hour, put the bourbon/butter jar in the freezer until the butter completely solidifies and rises to the top. You'll probably need to leave it overnight.
- Once the butter has solidified, use a fork or spoon to break up the solids and strain out the bourbon with a fine mesh strainer. Store the infused bourbon in the fridge. (It should yield about 1 cup.) You can also store the leftover butter in the fridge for a week or two until you use it for something else, like chocolate chip cookies.
- In a mixing glass filled with ice, stir together the bourbon, pear nectar, Amaro Nonino and bitters. You just want to stir it enough to chill it while also diluting it slightly. Strain into an old-fashioned glass with one large ice cube. Garnish with a lemon peel.