Turtle Shortbread Rounds (A Little Bit Crunchy A Little Bit Rock and Roll)
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.