The one no-fail, sure-fire, knock-it-out-of-the-ballpark cookie recipe I include in my cookie basket every year is my mother's butterscotch brownie recipe. I grew up eating these - not just during the holidays, but all year round. Friends, neighbors, and co-workers alike snarf these down with child-like abandon, and I know I would hear about it if I stopped including them.
My mother's recipe comes from The Boston School of Cooking cookbook by Fannie Farmer. A single batch makes a small 8x8 square pan of brownies - hardly enough to get through the season. This year, I made two triple-batches. Here's the triple-batch recipe.
1 cup butter - this is two full sticks
3 cups brown sugar, packed
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 cups flour
3 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
Melt the butter the butter on the stovetop over low heat, making sure it doesn't get too hot. Mix the remaining ingredients together in a large bowl. When the butter has just about melted, remove it from the heat and let it cool for a few minutes. Then add it to the remaining ingredients, folding everything together with a large spatula or wooden spoon. Even though I have the Kitchen Aid Pro, I still prefer to mix these by hand. I've tried getting modern and fancy with this recipe and it hasn't worked for me, although my mom adds chocolate chips and walnuts to this recipe these days.
One the batter is well,mixed, spread it into a buttered 9x13 pan. Bake for about 25 minutes at 350 and use a toothpick to check the doneness. Cool on a wire rack.
And that's it.