29.12.13

Celebration Cookies

IMG_3455

Chocolate Almond Caramel Cookies
Adapted from The Tough Cookie

Ingredients

1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
⅔ cup granulated sugar
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons of milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup all-purpose flour
⅓ cup cocoa powder
¼ teaspoon salt
¾ cup salted peanuts, chopped

For the caramel sauce (or use a good quality store bought caramel)
½ cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons salted butter, cut into 3 pieces
¼ cup whipping cream



Instructions
Start with the cookies. In a medium-sized bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until nice and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg yolk, the milk and the vanilla. Mix until incorporated. In another bowl, stir together the flour, cocoa and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and stir together with a rubber spatula or a wooden spoon. Once the dry ingredients have somewhat absorbed the wet ingredients, mix briefly with the mixer until a dough forms. Shape the dough into a flat disc, wrap with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 1 hour.
In the meantime, make the caramel sauce. To a small saucepan, add the sugar. Heat over medium-low heat, stirring continuously with a rubber spatula. The sugar will start to clump together and eventually melt into a thick amber-colored caramel. Once all of the sugar has melted, carefully add the butter. The mixture will start to bubble once you add the butter, so be careful! Stir the butter into the caramel until it has completely melted. This can take up to 2 minutes. Next, slowly drizzle in the whipping cream and stir to combine. Again, the caramel will start to bubble as you add the cold liquid. Allow to boil for 1 minute, then take the caramel off the heat and either dunk the bottom of the saucepan in a cold water bath (aka: a bowl of cold water large enough to fit the bottom of the saucepan) to make sure the caramel stops cooking, or pour the hot caramel in a heatproof container, such as a coffee mug. Allow to cool before using.
Preheat your oven to 350°F and line a cookie sheet with baking parchment. Take the cookie dough out of the fridge and cut it into 30 equal chunks. Roll each of the chunks in your hands to form a dough ball and then roll the dough balls into the chopped peanuts. Place on the lined cookie sheet ( 5-cm/2-inches apart) and make and indent with your thumb in the center of each ball. Bake for 12 minutes, then take out off the oven and immediately press the centers of the cookies down again (this time, I used a little measuring spoon) to make a more defined well for the caramel. Allow to cool to room temperature and spoon the caramel into the centers of the cookies. Place in the fridge to set for about an hour, then serve.

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