Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Salted Caramel Cookie Bites

Salty, sweet, creamy, crunchy... I love treats that are complex enough to capture these specific tastes and textures. When I recently received my King Arthur Flour catalog in the mail, I came across a recipe that achieved exactly that. It wasn't very long until I found myself in the kitchen making these Salted Caramel Cookie Bites... and subsequently eating them like candy!...

Making these salted caramel cookie bites was much easier than I thought. These are made to be small little bites of deliciousness but if I were to make them again, I'd definitely make them into bar cookies. The cookie itself has a rich, depth of flavor due to the amount of brown sugar used. Once baked, the cookies are drizzled with buttery caramel and sprinkled with chopped toasted almonds and a tiny pinch of coarse sea salt. With every bite, you get to enjoy the sweetness of the cookie, saltiness from the sea salt, creaminess of the caramel and the crunchiness of the toasted almonds. These bites are addictive... you have been warned!

Salted Caramel Cookie Bites
recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour

3/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed 
1/2 cup soft butter  
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon baking powder
1 large egg
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup prepared caramel sauce  
1/4 cup chopped toasted almonds
1 teaspoon coarse sea salt

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Grease (or line with paper cups) a mini muffin pan or a filled teacakes pan.
In a large bowl, beat together the sugar, butter, salt, vanilla, and flavoring until well blended. Add the baking powder and egg and beat until fluffy. Mix in the flour. Use a rounded teaspoon scoop to fill the 20-24 cups of the mini muffin pan.

Bake the cookies for 8-10 minutes, until browned around the edges. Cool in the pan for 15 minutes.
Just before serving, drizzle the caramel sauce over the top of each cookie a sprinkle with almond and salt.  

Yield: 36 cookies from a mini-muffin pan