Chocolate Caramel Treasures

December 17, 2009


If you are relatively new here, you might think that this is a baking only blog.  First there is the name.  Dana Treat implies, well, treats – right?  And then there would be the fact there have been an awful lot of cakes and cookies here as of late.  The last time I wrote about a main course was on November 20th.  (Peanut Curry.  It’s a good one.)


The fact of the matter is that after I cooked for Thanksgiving, main courses have not been a big part of my life.  The things I have been making are not really worth writing about.  My husband has been traveling a lot so I’ve been eating a lot of scrounged leftovers and baked potatoes.  Yawn.

And then there is the fact that between the teachers, bus drivers, babysitters and speech therapists in our lives there are 13 gift bags to fill.   Don’t even get me started on family.  And so, I started baking.  And I just kept baking.  And actually, I have some more baking to do.  But I also have some big meals coming up so I hope to share a few more savory things in the next few weeks.  Until then, go make these cookies.


This is yet another one of these delicious recipes that I made long ago and just lost track of.  As I was making out my Baking List 2009, I stumbled upon them.  This is a great bang for your buck recipe.  Yes, there is a bit of fussing but nothing about it is hard.  The dough is incredibly easy to make and you can do it a day or two ahead and let it sit in the refrigerator.  The caramel filling is nothing more than store-bought caramels melted down with some cream, so if making caramel scares you – no worrying necessary.  Gourmet?  Not really, but who cares?  And the chocolate drizzle requires nothing more complicated than a Ziploc bag.  At the end of it all you get this very fancy looking and incredibly delicious cookie.  Double the recipe because you will want lots.


One Year Ago:  Ina Garten’s Jalapeño Cheddar Cornbread

Chocolate Caramel Treasures

Adapted from Gourmet
Makes about 2 1/2 dozen

I really never grease my sheets when making cookies, but you will need to do so with this recipe.  Or you can use parchment paper.

For Cookies
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup sugar
1 large egg yolk
2 tbsp. whole milk
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup flour
1/3 cup Dutch-process unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 large egg white, lightly beaten
1/2 cup finely chopped hazelnuts

For Caramel Filling
10 (1-by 1/2-inch) plain caramels, unwrapped
2 tbsp. heavy cream

For Chocolate Drizzle
3 oz. semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

Make cookies:
Beat together butter, sugar, yolk, milk, and vanilla with an electric mixer until blended well.  Sift in flour, cocoa, and salt and beat on low speed until mixture forms a dough.  Chill, wrapped in plastic wrap until firm, at least 30 minutes and up to 2 days.

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Roll scant tablespoons of dough into balls, then coat with egg white, letting excess drip off, and roll in nuts to coat.  Arrange balls, as coated, 1 1/2 inches apart on greased baking sheets and press your thumb into center of balls to flatten, leaving a depression.  Bake in batches in middle of oven until puffed slightly but centers are still soft, 10 to 12 minutes.  Remove from oven and immediately press centers of cookies again.  (Use the handle end of a wooden spoon.)  Transfer to racks to let cool.

Make filling while cookies are cooling:
Heat caramels and cream in a small saucepan over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until melted and mixture is smooth.  Spoon into centers of cookies and cool completely.

Make chocolate drizzle:
Melt chocolate in a double boiler or a metal bowl set over a pan of simmering water, stirring until smooth.  Cool to warm (this will take about 45 minutes) and pour into a sandwich size sealable plastic bag.  Seal bag, press chocolate to one corner and snip off a very small hole.  Drizzle chocolate over cookies and let stand until set, about 30 minutes.


  1. I can usually say no to cookies- but anything with caramel sucks me in! holy yum!

    Comment by fresh365 — December 17, 2009 @ 1:30 pm

  2. Bring on the baked goods. Who needs a proper meal when you can have sweets?

    Comment by Michelle — December 17, 2009 @ 3:26 pm

  3. I am with Michelle on this one – who needs real food when you can eat sweets all day! These cookies look fantastic – especially with the caramel… yum

    Comment by What's Gaby Cooking — December 17, 2009 @ 4:36 pm

  4. as a baker myself, I totally understand where you are coming from…we may be out of protein sources but there is 10 pounds of unsalted butter and the equivalent of a small pony in unbleached flour…chicken is over rated! Cookies look yummy!

    Comment by sweetiepetitti — December 17, 2009 @ 4:37 pm

  5. Oh, these look so good! I love chocolate and caramel together. Like you, I feel like all I’ve done since Thanksgiving is bake. I’ve hardly cooked dinner because I have so many people to bake for. Still love it though.

    Comment by mara — December 17, 2009 @ 5:18 pm

  6. I’m with you…having a lot of Cheerios lately while baking like crazy for gift baskets I deliver each year. Just finished my own chocolate caramel treat but doesn’t mean these don’t look yummy and on my list of things to try!

    Comment by Barbara Kiebel — December 17, 2009 @ 7:47 pm

  7. OH MY GOODNESS! These are amazingly lovely treasures! I cannot believe how pretty they are. Has anyone told you you should open up a little shop? I would be there everyday. I would be fat, but I would be happy. Nice to take a peek into your holidays. Hope to see you after it all quiets down a bit. xo

    Comment by redmenace — December 18, 2009 @ 1:16 am

  8. I’m loving the theme of these cookies. And I’m with ya on the all things sweet after Thanksgiving…I think post-Thanksgiving to Christmas Eve should be officially renamed ‘the intermission,’ in terms of eating dinner.

    Comment by Kamille — December 18, 2009 @ 6:34 am

  9. My mother said “You can bring cookies to Christmas Eve” I thought: “Ugh. I don’t want to make spritz or krumkakke or any of the usual suspects.”

    Having seen these pictures, I think I’m baking these this weekend. Maybe a double batch so there are some left by Thursday!

    Comment by Not Fainthearted — December 18, 2009 @ 6:12 pm

  10. Those look sinfully good!

    Comment by chocolate shavings — December 18, 2009 @ 6:58 pm

  11. Beautiful! I love the combination of chocolate and caramel!

    Comment by Amber — December 19, 2009 @ 4:49 am

  12. What a pretty cookie, and I love that they are simple to make! These look dangerously addictive :)

    Comment by Lucy — December 20, 2009 @ 7:47 pm

  13. Dana… I’m really glad that you’re baking and sharing and baking and sharing. I just wish I lived next door so I could partake in some of the sharing.

    I always love to sit, with a cup of tea, and read your musings. Lovely.

    Comment by Chef Gwen — December 21, 2009 @ 2:13 am

  14. Tonight I’m taking a break and getting my holiday baking done (just in the nick of time!). Too bad I don’t have any caramels or I’d make these right now. They look beautiful.

    Comment by kickpleat — December 21, 2009 @ 7:02 am

  15. You give a gift to the school bus driver? Wow, you’re like a Christmas supermom! I don’t even participate in my office card exchange.

    All those giftees will be very, very pleased to receive these, I’m sure. They look super yummy!

    Comment by Hilary — December 21, 2009 @ 12:06 pm

  16. I made these treasures last night – they are great! A bit fussy and time-consuming to make but definitely worth the effort. And it’s good I followed you advice to make the double quantity:-)

    Comment by Natasa — December 21, 2009 @ 12:15 pm

  17. Wonderful blog! I had so much fun exploring today. Your cookies look delicious. I will have to put them on my list! Yum.

    Comment by Kate — December 21, 2009 @ 4:25 pm

  18. OH MY BISCUITS!!!! These are AMAZING!!! They’re almost a cross between a brownie & a candy!! SOOO rich!!! Though I made a double batch and had to triple the caramel sauce. I think I barely got over 4 dozen for my double batch and I did make them smaller.

    Great Christmas cookie/treat though!!! Thank you SO much for sharing!!

    Oh – no need to make any high altitude adjustments either!!

    Comment by Christina — December 21, 2009 @ 4:53 pm

  19. I may make these as a Christmas gift for my boyfriend’s parents! They look so rich and delicious!

    Comment by Peggy — December 21, 2009 @ 4:57 pm

  20. Those sure look like a treasure, a GOLD one!

    Comment by Hillary @ Nutrition Nut on the Run — December 24, 2009 @ 8:19 am

  21. I’m spending the New Years in Tahoe with friends and I am SOO making these to bring with me! What an awesome recipe.

    Have a great New Year’s Dana!

    Comment by Allison Arevalo — December 29, 2009 @ 4:19 pm

  22. What gorgeous little cookies! I love how easy they are yet how fancy they look.

    Comment by Ashley — January 3, 2010 @ 1:00 am

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