Boy Bakes Treats - Caramel Cookies

Salted Caramel Cookies

Boy Bakes Treats - Caramel Cookies

The first time making these cookies, it was a combination of two of the most rewarding things about baking, and perhaps cooking in general - being able to cook something you think you'd never be able to create, and to discover something entirely new and delicious through a serendipidous experiment.

First of all, the caramel. I'd always thought that this was something that was way to hard for a klutzy cook like me. I'd watched enough competition cooking TV to know that caramel was something that was particularly hard to do - if you didn't watch it like a hawk, it burned in an instant and everything was ruined and it was time to pack your knives and go home. What I didn't realise, that if you're just making a sauce, it's not a top-rated TV show and you're not multi-tasking, it's kind of achievable. Just keep stirring, keep it saucy, and (fingers-crossed) you should be right.

The serendipity part? That was down to my amazing partner. After looking in vain for a store-bought caramel to place in the middle of the cookie for an extra surprise, she asked 'Why not save your caramel and add it in later?' This is why she's the brains of the outfit. Adding a gooey centre completely changes this bake from a pretty OK cookie to something casually elegant and incredibly tasty. Wrap the caramel up into the dough ball and try to keep it all in the centre - but don't worry if it leaks out in the cook! The seeping caramel adds a real personality to each cookie and makes them look so much more inviting. Sprinkle some sea salt as soon as it comes out of the oven and you'll end up with something pretty special.

MAKES

20

PREP

25 minutes
plus resting

COOKS

15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 125 grams butter
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 2 tablespoons golden syrup
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups self-raising flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Sea salt flakes

Directions

  1. In a saucepan set over a medium heat, add the butter, sugars, milk, golden syrup and vanilla and stir to combine. Continue to heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture begins to bubble. Let it cook for an extra 30 seconds, then remove it from the heat and set it aside to cool to a warm temperature.
  2. Sift the flour and salt into a mixing bowl. Reserve 1/4 cup of the cooled caramel and refrigerate it. Pour the rest over the flour, stir until combined, then use your hands to bring it together to form a soft dough. Cover with plastic wrap and leave to harden in the fridge for at least 1 hour.
  3. Heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius/360 degrees Fahrenheit and line two oven trays with baking paper.
  4. Take your dough out of the fridge and divide into quarters, as evenly sized as possible, then each quarter into four. Take around a tablespoon of the mixture, make a thumbprint in the centre and drop 1/4 teaspoon of the reserved caramel into the divot. Cover with another half tablespoon of dough and mould them together, wrapping the caramel inside as best you can (it doesn't have to be 100%). Use lightly floured hands to roll into walnut-sized balls.
  5. Place on prepared trays about 2 fingers apart, as they will spread as they cook, and use a fork to flatten them slightly.
  6. Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until they're golden. Don't worry if the caramel starts to seep out! Remove from oven and sprinkle with sea salt. Leave on the baking tray to firm up for about 10 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Crack away any extra caramel that may have leaked out from the cookie and reward yourself with some snacking shards.

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