I'm not the only baker in the family. My mom was known for her baked goods and now my dad has taken over the baking in their house. His Peanut Butter Cup Topped Rice Krispie Treats and Pecan Sandie Rolo Cookies are two of my favorites. But those two may need to step aside and make room for my new favorite....
Turtle Shortbread Rounds
For the cookies:
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
2 1/4 cups flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
For the topping:
1/2 stick butter (1/4 cup)
2 tablespoons milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 bag Kraft caramels
1 cup milk chocolate chips
approximately 70 pecan halves
1. Beat the butter well. Add in the remaining ingredients until a dough is formed without lumps. Refrigerate the dough for approximately half an hour.
2. Scrape the dough out onto a work surface and separate into two sections. Roll each section into a log approximately 1 inch in diameter. Flatten the ends of the log and wrap each log in wax paper Refrigerate at least a half hour or until you are ready to bake.
3. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Slice logs into 3/16 of an inch thick and lay out on an ungreased cookie sheet pan. Bake until they are lightly golden brown, 8-10 minutes. Remove the cookies from the oven and make a small well in the center of each cookie. (You can do this using the end of a wooden spoon.) Let the cookies rest on the cookie sheet pan for 5 minutes. Then, place them on a wax paper covered surface.
4. Meanwhile, in a small pot over a medium heat, melt the butter and mix in the milk, salt, and caramels, stirring until smooth. Remove from the heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Spoon the caramel into the well of the cookies, allowing the caramel to slightly mound.
5. Lightly press a pecan halve into the center of each cookie.
6. Melt the chocolate and pour into the corner of a freezer bag. Snip the end and drizzle the chocolate over the cookies.
Store the cookies in a cool dry place or in the refrigerator.