Salted Caramel Thumbprint Cookies

Source: Bakers Royale

Salted Caramel Thumbprint Cookies

Yields 24 cookies

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment.

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons of flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/4 sugar
1/4 light brown sugar
1 egg separated
1 teaspoon of vanilla

1. Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
2. Add light brown sugar, egg yolk and vanilla extract. Beat until just combined. Set batter aside.
3. In a separate bowl whisk flour and salt.
4. Slowly add flour mixture to batter while beating on low until the dough resembles lumpy wet sand. Do not overbeat or the dough will become sticky. (see #1)
5. Form into one inch balls and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
6. In the mean time, beat egg white until frothy.
7. Removed chilled dough and dip into egg whites first then roll into nuts.
8. Using either your thumb or a round ended tool (I used the end of a pastry brush) to create an indentation.
9. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from baking sheet and cool on rack.

Toast Nuts (Pecans or Almonds)
1. Place preferred nuts on baking sheet. Bake at 350 for 7-8 minutes. Cool completely before chopping.

Caramel Sauce
20 Kraft caramel squares
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

1. Place caramel squares and cream in a sauce pan and melt over low heat for approximately 7-8 minutes.
2. Caramel sauce is ready when it is free of any solids.

1. Fill indentation of thumbprint cookies.
2. Sprinkle with sea salt.

A few notes:
1. I have provided a purist and cheat version for the caramel sauce. The one you see in the picture is the cheat version. Click here for the purist version that I use in my Chocolate Caramel Shortbread Bar.
2. Don’t fill your thumb print hole prior to baking. That may work with traditional thumbprints that are made with jams and preserves, but the caramel sauce lacks the gelatinous component to keep its consistency while the cookies are baking.
3. I used almonds because it is one of two nuts my husband will eat, but pecan would also be suitable for these Salted Caramel Thumbprint Cookies.
4. Toast your nuts to extract the best flavor. Keep in mind nuts quickly go from baking to burn, so keep a watchful eye.
5. These cookie can be stored up to three days in an airtight container between parchment paper.