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Turtle Thumbprint Cookies

Happy Monday! I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Can you believe it's almost December? 2017 seriously just flew by us. Someone make time go by slower!

I know one person who is definitely excited December is almost here, and that is Kayle of the blog, The Cooking Actress. Her little man is due to arrive 2 weeks from now...and we are throwing her a virtual baby shower today! Surprise Kayle!
Kayle is one of the very few food bloggers I have met in person, and the crazy thing is, we met accidentally! We both moved to Ohio in the same year but we live an hour away from each other, so the odds of us randomly bumping into each other at a grocery store were crazy slim...but it happened! We were pretty mind-blown. She is totally the sweetest girl ever and deserves the best!
One look at Kayle's blog and you could probably figure out that she loves cookies. So, what better way to celebrate her than with a slew of cookie recipes! I chose these turtle thumbprint cookies to make because they have been bookmarked since five-ever and I needed to try them. Despite my dislike of nuts, they were amazing.
They do require an extra few steps to make, and it gets pretty messy between the dipping and the rolling, but they are definitely worth it.

Turtle Thumbprint Cookies

Yield: 18 cookies
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For the cookies:
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg, separated
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup pecans, finely chopped

For the caramel center:
16 caramel squares, unwrapped
3 tablespoons heavy cream

Fleur de sel, for garnish

For the chocolate drizzle:
3 ounces chocolate chips
1/4 cup heavy cream


In a large bowl, using an electric hand mixer, beat together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg yolk, milk, and vanilla and beat until incorporated. (Reserve the egg white for a later step)

Whisk together flour, cocoa powder, and salt in a separate bowl. Then, add to wet ingredients and beat until just combined. Cover dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or overnight.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Lightly beat reserved egg white in a small bowl. In another small bowl, add finely chopped pecans.

Using a medium cookie scoop, scoop out balls of dough. Use your hand to roll them into a more uniform shape. Dip balls in egg white, then in chopped pecans, pressing lightly to coat the dough with the pecans.

Place on prepared baking sheets. Use the rounded end of a wooden spoon to indent the balls in the center. Bake in preheated oven for 12-13 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool just for a few minutes. While they are still warm, use the rounded end of the spoon again to indent the center, it will have risen up slightly during baking.

To prepare caramel center, heat caramel squares and heavy cream in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until melted and smooth.

Spoon about 1/2 teaspoon of caramel sauce into the center of each cookie. Top with  a sprinkle of fleur de sel.

In another small saucepan, heat heavy cream until simmering. Add chocolate chips and stir until melted and smooth. Drizzle ganache over cookies.

Let the cookies set and cool completely before serving. Store in an air-tight container at room temperature.

Recipe from Handle the Heat

Check out the rest of the baby shower recipes made by my fellow hosts!

Cookie Dough Millionaire Bars - by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
Derby Pie - by The Spiffy Cookie
Chocolate Chip Rice Krispies Treat Cookies - by Pies and Plots
Eggnog Crinkle Cookies - by The Domestic Rebel
Cookie Dough Cups - by The Pajama Chef
Homemade Salted Caramel Oreos - by Eats with With Others
Double Chocolate Peppermint Cookies - by Blahnik Baker

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