These cookies are really, truly delicious.
Imagine a soft and chewy brownie. Now add pecans and a heart of creamy caramel. Interested?
But hold on just a minute.
As delicious as they are, I’ve left them off my cookie platters for more years than I’d like to admit because I remembered they were kind of a pain to make. I have a 1 1/2 year old that requires enough of my attention. Needy cookies? No thank you.
But this season, I’m trying to focus more on doing things that truly make me happy, so I decided to give these cookies another try since I like them so much. Happily, my memory of their tedious prep didn’t live up to the reality. And when I really think back on it, the last year I made them was when I put way too much pressure on myself to bake cookies for everyone and anyone. I ended up ruining the whole season.
I’m so happy I gave these another try, although this time it’ll take a Christmas miracle to get me to share them with anyone!!
Caramel Pecan Turtle Thumbprints
1 egg 1/2 cup butter, softened 2/3 cup sugar 2 tbsp milk 1 tsp vanilla 1 cup flour 1/3 cup cocoa powder 1/4 tsp salt 16 vanilla caramels 3 tbsp heavy cream 1 1/4 cups finely chopped pecans
Separate egg, reserving yolk and white. Cover and chill egg white until needed. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer for 30 seconds. Add sugar and beat well. Beat in egg yolk, milk and vanilla.
In another bowl, stir together flour, cocoa and salt. Add flour mixture to butter mixture and beat until well combined. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for 2 hours or until easy to handle.
Preheat oven to 350. In a small saucepan, heat and stir caramels and whipping cream over low heat until mixture is smooth. Set aside.
Lightly beat reserved egg white. Shape the dough into 1 in balls. Roll balls in egg white and then nuts. Place balls 1 in apart on lightly greased cookie sheet. Using your thumb, make an indentation in the center of each cookie.
Bake in preheated oven about 10 minutes or until edges are firm. Spoon some melted caramel into indentation in each cookie. Transfer to wire racks to cool. If necessary, reheat caramel mixture until spoonable.
Cookies can be stored at room temp up to 3 days or frozen up to 3 months. Yield: 36 cookies.
Recipe compliments of Better Homes & Garden’s “Christmas Cookies” magazine, 2002