Oh boy, I am so behind on my holiday baking this year. Way too much going on. But that's ok...busy is good sometimes...
I was able to make a few batches of cookies last week. Salted Caramel Shortbread Cookies is one of the cookie recipes I had pinned from Pinterest to try new this year. I'm glad I found some time to try them. They are delicious. They are in no way low fat, low calorie, or healthy, but every now and then, it's ok to indulge in a treat. This one is definitely worth the indulgence if you like that sweet/salty combo.
The caramel is La Lechera Dulce de Leche. You can find it with the Hispanic foods in most larger grocers. The site where I got this recipe originally heated it up and piped it into the cooled cookies, which does give it a nice smooth appearance. But I found spreading it with a knife while the cookies were still warm worked fine, thought not quite as beautiful. The caramel does harden some and set up (like frosting) after sitting at room temperature for a few hours, so they aren't a gooey sticky mess. Since I halved the original recipe, I only used about a half of the can of La Lechera Ducle de Leche. If you aren't familiar with this product, it is delicious. I am sure I will be able to find a way to use up the other half of the can without a problem. It might even only require a spoon!
I am not going to work up the nutrition information for this cookie, as it is an indulgence recipe. Eat in moderation and enjoy.
Salted Caramel Shortbread Cookies
adapted from A Spicy Perspective
Yield: Approx. 2 1/2 dozen cookies
1 cup of unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup + 2 TBS granulated sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 tsp kosher salt
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1- 13oz. can La Lechera, Dulce de Leche (caramel)
coarse sea salt for sprinkling
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment or a silpat.
2. In a stand mixer or with an electric mixer in a large bowl, combine the butter and the sugar. Mix until combined. Add in the vanilla and 1/4 tsp salt. Mix very well until light and fluffy. (4-5 minutes is about right)
3. With the mixer on low, slowly add the flour and mix until well incorporated.
4. Take about a TBS of dough and roll into a ball. With finger or thumb, press an indentation into the middle of the ball.
5. Bake for 15-20 minutes. (the original poster baked for approximately 20 minutes, but I found that to be too long) Adjust bake time according to your oven. Cookies are done when they appear just browned around the bottom edges. Allow to cool for a minute on the baking sheet before removing them to rack. (The indentations you made before baking will look like they are gone while the cookies are baking, but as they cool, the cookie will sink and they will appear again.)
6. While the cookies are still warm, spread the indentations with a bit of the La Lachera, then sprinkle with coarse sea salt. Allow the cookie to sit at room temperature for a few hours or until the caramel has set up and isn't sticky any longer. Store in an airtight container.
These really are a delicious addition to anyone's holiday baking list. Salted Caramel is all the rage right now, it seems. Who doesn't love that sweet/salty combo? Like I mentioned, not low fat, low calorie or healthy by any stretch of the imagination, but I really believe it's ok to indulge now and again. Moderation, of coarse, is the key to indulging without dire consequences.
I, once again, find myself apologizing for the lack of new posts this month. As I have said in previous posts, my life is super busy right now...not only from the busy-ness of the upcoming holidays, but my kids have some big changes coming up this month and next month that are adding to my "to do list."
I'd like to try to post a few more holiday cookie recipes this week. I've pretty much wrapped up my shopping and have this week to bake...so I'll share any good cookie recipes I stumble upon. I will most likely be doing the cookbook giveaway after the first of the year, so look for it then! I've made several recipes from the book I received for the review and LOVE them all so far! I'm anxious to share, but I want to make sure I have enough time to do the giveaway when I post them.