I can hardly pass through the grocery store without picking up a bag of Kraft caramels (the one with the sticks in the bag). Then, I choose some Granny Smith apples and I really believe I will make candy apples. Before you know it, we’ve gobbled up the caramels, the apples go into school lunches, and the sticks gather dust in the drawer.
But not this year…caramel and apple unite! Here is my rendition of a thumbprint cookie using caramels and apples. No sticks needed.
Candied Apple Cookies
- 1-1/3 cup unsalted butter
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 4 egg yolks
- 2 teaspoons almond extract
- 2 eggs whites plus 1 whole egg, combined and slightly beaten
- 2 cups finely-chopped walnuts
- 1/2 sugar plus 2 tablespoons cinnamon combined (for the walnuts)
- 35 soft caramel candies, unwrapped
- 1 Granny Smith apple, chopped finely
- 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons cinnamon (for apples)
In a mixing bowl, beat butter until fluffy. Add flour, sugar, egg yolks and almond extract. Combine thoroughly. Cover and chill dough for about an hour.
Mix walnuts with cinnamon-sugar mix and set aside.
Chop apples and mix with cinnamon-sugar mix and set aside.
Shape chilled dough into two-inch balls with a cookie ball scoop. Roll in beaten egg whites/egg mixture and then roll in chopped walnuts. Place on parchment-lined cookie sheet. Press your thumb in the center of cookie. Bake in 350⁰ oven for 10 minutes.
Remove from oven and place a caramel square in the middle of each cookie. Sprinkle cinnamon-sugar chunks on top of cookie.
Bake another 10 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on cookie sheet.
Yield: 35 cookies
Photo by Cindy Dyer