I'm not a baker.
I like to make cute cake pops and I make a mean sour cream banana nut coffee cake, but my pretty apple green Kitchenaid mixer often goes months without being used. Every once in a while, I'll see a recipe that makes me want to pretend, just for the day, that I'm awesome at baking. And every once in a while, the results are pure perfection.
I love fall recipes. Apples, cinnamon, caramel... and don't even get me started on pumpkin. I was thumbing through the latest (September 2012) issue of Parents magazine, when I saw a recipe for Caramel Apple Cookies. I HAD to try them. I already had almost everything I needed, so I picked up the last few ingredients and when the boys went down for a nap, I started mixing & measuring & chopping & baking.
Oh. My. Goodness.
These are the most moist, sweet, delicious cookies EVER. They're like a caramel apple, apple cobbler and a cinnamon sugar cookie all-in-one. When you take a yummy bite and you taste a piece of green apple, it's like you've hit the jackpot. Really, I've died and gone to heaven.
Here's the recipe:
2 stick of salted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup graham-cracker crumbs
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 small apple, peeled, cored & finely chopped (3/4 cup)
1 cup vanilla caramels
3 Tbsp. whipping cream
1) Preheat oven to 350. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. In a bowl, beat butter on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Beat in sugars until fluffy. Then, add eggs & vanilla.
2) In a medium bowl, stir together flour, crumbs, baking powder, salt & cinnamon. Add to butter mixture and beat until combined. Stir in apple.
3) Shape dough into 1 1/4 inch balls. Arrange balls 2 inches apart on cookie sheets. Bake for 12 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Remove and let cool on wire racks.
4) In a bowl, mix caramels and cream. Microwave on high for 30 to 60 seconds or until nearly melted, stirring once. Stir until smooth. Drizzle over cookies; serve when hardened.