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Brown Butter Cardamom Cookies

Faux bois, or imitation wood grain, is a favorite motif of Martha's -- use a plastic faux-bois mat (available from Chinese Clay Art) to give cookies this nature-inspired look.

  • yield: Makes thirty-two 6-by-4-inch or sixteen 12-by-4-inch cookies




  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 5 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cardamom
  • 1 cup dark-brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark honey, such as wildflower
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • Maple syrup, for brushing


  1. Step 1

    Heat butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat until lightly browned, 3 to 5 minutes; remove from heat and set aside to cool.

  2. Step 2

    In a large bowl, whisk together flour, salt, and cardamom; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together browned butter and both sugars until light and fluffy. Gradually add flour mixture and mix until just combined. Turn dough out onto work surface and divide into two equal pieces. Form each piece into a rectangle.

  3. Step 3

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  4. Step 4

    Working with one piece of dough at a time (and keeping remaining piece covered with plastic wrap), place dough on a nonstick baking mat and loosely cover with plastic wrap. Roll dough out between baking mat and plastic wrap to form a large rectangle, 1/16-inch-thick. Remove plastic wrap and place a faux-bois mat on dough, pattern side down. With rolling pin, lightly roll over mat to imprint dough.

  5. Step 5

    Carefully remove faux-bois mat. Trim edges of dough and reserve scraps. Cut into four 6-by-4-inch rectangles or two 12-by-14-inch rectangles. Carefully transfer nonstick baking mat to a baking sheet and transfer to freezer; freeze until dough is chilled, about 10 minutes. Repeat process with scraps and remaining piece of dough.

  6. Step 6

    Once dough is chilled, position rectangles so that they are 1 inch apart. Transfer to oven and bake until edges are slightly brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack and brush with maple syrup; let cool completely.

The Martha Stewart Show, April 2010



Reviews (4)

  • 21 Oct, 2010

    Ok nevermind, I see that she is using the yellow one which is for the cookies. The other question I do have is are these cookies crunchy or chewy? How well do they keep/store for shipping if brushed with maple syrup?

  • 21 Oct, 2010

    When I go to the website that Martha references, there is a "food grade" plastic mat and a rubber one. Martha seems to use the rubber one in the video that is intended for clay, but a salesperson at the store told me I should definitely not use that one on cookies. However, I'm worried that the texture in the plastic mat is not as apparent as in the rubber mat and wouldn't show up if the cookies puffed. Can someone tell me which Martha used?

  • 29 Jun, 2010

    Step two. "Add honey, egg, and cream; beat to combine. "

  • 17 Apr, 2010

    What about the egg and heavy cream? When do I add them?