Cookbook Crush: Bravetart + Brown Butter Rice Krispies Treats

Brown Butter Rice Krispies Treats with homemade marshmallow creme

Oh, those? They're Brown Butter Rice Krispies Treats made without bagged marshmallows, but with homemade marshmallow creme. More on those in a minute.

Bravetart cookbook review and recipe

I love a good cookbook; I know you do, too. Stella Parks has been one of my favorites for years. She's an honest-to-goodness pastry chef, graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, and was named by Food & Wine Magazine as one of their "Best New Pastry Chefs." What I'm saying is, Stella knows her stuff.

With all of her impressive background, training, and work, you'd think her recipes would be out-of-reach for the home cook. Not so! Stella's blog, Bravetart, and her posts for Serious Eats are so down-to-earth and so approachable, that you'll be running for your kitchen to bake. Stella, along with my friend Lupita, gave me the confidence to try baking macarons.

Bravetart cookbook review

Stella's book, Bravetart, is a love letter to American desserts. Not only does Stella provide recipes for making iconic homemade Oreos, Oatmeal Cream Pies, Angel Food Cake, Ice Cream Sandwiches, McDonald's-Style Apple Turnovers, Snickerdoodles, and Lofthouse-Style Cookies, she provides a history lesson with each recipe. The cookbook reads like a textbook...a FUN textbook. As I was reading it, I kept thinking, "THIS is what I should have studied in school!"

Brown Butter Rice Krispies Treats

Let's make Stella's Brown Butter Rice Krispies Treats. The recipe for the classic version is in the book as well, and I've made a few batches already. If you're a fan of Rice Krispies Treats, you'll really want to make Stella's version. Along with the classic, she provides six other variations, including malted milk and coconut!

Brown Butter Rice Krispies Treats with homemade marshmallow creme | featuring Bravetart's recipe

Look closely at the treats. You can see the bits of brown butter there. Oh my goodness. I love how they're so thick and creamy. These are no pre-packaged treats.

PSST...if you're a fan of brown butter treats, check out the following recipes:

For this version, start by browning butter. You'll cook the butter until golden and flaked with brown bits. The butter turns rich and nutty in flavor.

Brown Butter Rice Krispies Treats with homemade marshmallow creme

In Stella's recipe, you warm the cereal in the oven while you make the marshmallow creme.

Combine gelatin with water and vanilla. Why isn't there such a thing as vanilla Jello? It smells heavenly.

Next up, you'll heat water, corn syrup, sugar, and salt to 250 degrees. (You'll need a thermometer.)
Then, you'll cool it down.

...and whip it good.

Brown Butter Rice Krispies Treats

The butter gets added in last. I found with the brown butter version that the creme had some streaks of butter after whipping that the original version did not. Don't all comes together when mixed with the treats.

Brown Butter Rice Krispies Treats with homemade marshmallow creme |

I added just a touch of fleur de sel on top of time. Gotta have the salt with the sweet.

Brown Butter Rice Krispies Treats
{from Bravetart}

8 ounces unsalted butter
11 cups Rice Krispies cereal
2 envelopes (1/2 ounce) unflavored gelatin powder
1/4 cup cool water
1 tablespoon vanilla
1/2 cup water (for sugar syrup)
1 cup light corn syrup
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
pinch fleur de sel (my addition)

Melt the butter in a stainless steel pot over medium-low heat. Increase to medium and simmer, stirring with a heat-resistant spatula while the butter hisses and pops. Continue cooking and stirring, scraping up and brown bits that form in the bottom of the pan, until the butter is golden yellow and completely silent. Pour into a Pyrex baking cup, along with all of the toasty brown bits. Set aside.

Place oven rack on lower 1/3 of the oven. Grease a roasting pan or a Dutch oven. Pour in the cereal and place in the oven. Set to 175.

In a small bowl, mix gelatin, 1/4 cup water, and vanilla with a fork.

Combine the remaining water, corn syrup, sugar, and kosher salt in a 3-quart stainless steel pot. Stir, until bubbling, about 8 minutes. Clip on a thermometer and cook without stirring until the mixture reaches 250 degrees.

Transfer the thermometer to a bowl of a stand mixer and pour the hot syrup in all at once, scraping the pot with a heat-resistant spatula. Cool to exactly 212 degrees, about 8 minutes, then add the gelatin mixture. With the whisk attachment, mix on low speed to combine, then increase the speed to medium-high and whip until the syrup is thick, snowy-white, roughly tripled in volume, and beginning to ball up around the whisk, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, grease a 9 x 13" pan.

When the creme is thick, reduce speed to low, add the brown butter, and return to medium-high for a few seconds more. Scrape the creamy mixture over the warmed cereal using a greased spatula. Transfer to the prepared pan and gently press into an even layer. (A piece of waxed paper can help here.) Sprinkle on a pinch or two of fleur de sel (my addition, optional). Cover with foil and let stand at room temperature until firm, about 1 hour.

To serve, cut only as many portions as needed to prevent the treats going stale. Store leftovers tightly wrapped at room temperature for 3 days or for up to a week in the refrigerator.

Brown Butter Rice Krispies Treats with homemade marshmallow creme

Make the treats; buy Bravetart. The end.

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