Chocolate Caramel Thumbprints

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, separated
  • 2 tablespoons 2 percent milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup baking cocoa
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup finely chopped pecans
  • Filling:
  • 12 to 14 caramels
  • 3 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon shortening

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  2. Beat in egg yolk, milk and vanilla.
  3. In another bowl, whisk flour, cocoa and salt; gradually beat into creamed mixture.
  4. Refrigerate, covered, 1 hour or until easy to handle.
  5. Preheat oven to 350°. Shape dough into 1-in. balls.
  6. In a shallow bowl, beat egg white.
  7. Place pecans in a separate shallow bowl.
  8. Dip balls in egg white, then in pecans, patting to help pecans adhere.
  9. Place 2 in. apart on greased baking sheets.
  10. Press a deep indentation in center of each with the end of a wooden spoon handle.
  11. Bake 10-12 minutes or until set.
  12. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool.
  13. In a large heavy saucepan, melt caramels with cream over low heat; stir until smooth.
  14. Fill each cookie with about 1/2 teaspoon caramel mixture.
  15. In a microwave, melt chocolate chips and shortening; stir until smooth.
  16. Drizzle over cookies; let stand until set.
  17. Store in an airtight container.

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