When you combine browned butter with dark rum and butterscotch chips, it becomes apparent that blonds really do have more fun.
1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter
1 cup (185 grams) packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla or rum extract
Scant 1/4 cup dark rum
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (160 grams) flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup (125 grams) butterscotch chips
1/2 cup (70 grams) chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 350 F and grease a metal 8-by-8-inch pan.
Melt the butter in a small pot over medium-low heat. Continue to heat while stirring occasionally until toasted flecks start appearing in the melted butter. Stir continuously until the butter turns golden, five to 10 minutes, then remove from heat immediately to prevent burning. Pour the butter into a heat-proof bowl and place in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes to cool slightly.
Remove butter from freezer and stir in the brown sugar, extract and rum until the sugar has dissolved. Stir in the egg until combined.
In a large bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda and salt. Pour in the butter mixture and stir until smooth. Fold in the butterscotch chips and walnuts.
Use a spatula to spread the blondie mixture in a greased eight-by-eight-inch pan. For gooey blondies, bake 20 to 22 minutes and allow to cool for 15 to 20 minutes before slicing. For firmer squares, bake 23 to 25 minutes and allow the squares to cool completely before slicing.
Stephanie Eddy, who writes about her baking exploits at clockworklemon.com, lives in Calgary.