It’s funny how the holiday season brings out the baker in all of us. Other than pies, I’m not really one for baking. Why? Because unlike cooking— baking is truly a science. Measurements should be exact. Cook times are bible. There’s a ton of focus and patience required that generally I just don’t have. As we approached the holiday season last year I remember racking my brain for weeks, just trying to come up with something festive I could bring to Jon’s family on Christmas day. I knew the “real adults” would handle the ham and major sides, but I couldn’t bring myself to show up empty handed. I remember asking— has anyone called dibs on holiday pretzels? What about buckeyes? Are cupcakes and sprinkles lame? What’s the guest count and do I need to have enough to feed everyone? After 50 questions, “Thumb Print Twix” sufficiently met criteria:
Recipe easily multiplied
Must have chocolate
Random enough for no one else to duplicate
To my relief, these cookies were truly simple and a pretty big hit! Like a true weirdo, I didn’t even claim these guys as mine, just so I could safely gage reactions for a while! By the time the evening was over, I decided this recipe had to be my holiday thing. From Christmas 2015, hence forth— I would be Thumbprint Twix girl. Committed to the cause, I’m proud to say these cookies made their second debut this Christmas at my sister’s 30th birthday party!
T W I X H O L I D A Y C O O K I E S
1 / 2 Cup sugar
2 / 3 Cup butter (basically 1 stick + 2.5 tablespoons)
1 Teaspoon vanilla
2 Egg yolks
1 / 2 teaspoon salt
1 1/ 2 Cup flour
1 Cup chocolate chips
50 Soft caramels
3 Tablespoons heavy cream
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2. Dice sticks of butter into cubes and microwave for 30 seconds to soften. Dump this into a large bowl.
3. Mix vanilla, salt, and sugar into the bowl of butter. If the butter is not too warm, stir in 2 egg yolks. (Note: if you over did it in the microwave, just put the bowl in the fridge for a few minutes. You don’t want piping hot butter turning the yolks into scrambled eggs!)
4. Using a sifter, pour small batches of flour into the mixing bowl. Not only will sifting cut down on the mess, but if you’re mixing by hand you’ll have way more control when you’re combining the ingredients!
5. Cover the mixing bowl with plastic wrap and place this into the fridge for 30 – 45 minutes. (Note: if you don’t have time to tackle everything in one night, you can leave the dough in the fridge for a night or two. The first time, I made this I knocked it all out the morning of the festivities, but this time I couldn’t get to part 2 until the next night!)
6. Scoop cookie dough batter into small balls (about the size of a tablespoon) onto a sheet pan, or into a cup cake tin. (Last time my cookies turned out much wider and flatter than I imagined so this time I used a cupcake tin so the dough would be forced to rise). Also apparently I only own one cupcake tray so that was a hurdle too!
7. Place cookies in the oven and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the sides turn golden brown.
8. Remove cookies from the oven and press a teaspoon into the center of each cookie. Let the cookies cool completely (I placed mine in the fridge for 45 minutes) before adding caramel and chocolate.
9. In a small sauce pan, combine heavy cream and caramel morsels. Stir this continually until the mixture is smooth. When the cookies have cooled, scoop 1/2 teaspoon of caramel into each thumb print. Let this sit.
10. Pour chocolate chips into small – medium glass bowl. Melt chocolate in the microwave at 30 second increments, OR create a double boiler on the stove. (Note: if you create a double boiler, fill 1/3 of a sauce pan with water, and place the glass bowl on top. Turn the stove to medium, and stir the bowl of chocolate as the steam causes it to melt).
11. After the chocolate is melted and smooth, let this cool for a few minutes then scoop the sauce into a piping bag (plastic zip lock bag with a corner snipped off). Drizzle cookies with chocolate and add a pink of sprinkles to the tray.