Caramel apple spice cookies

27 Feb

A few days that felt a little like fall (expect, you know, with an extra 20 feet of snow on the ground) brought this one around: caramel apple spice cookies.

A handy packet of pre-made caramel (actually part of a caramel apple decoration kit) and North Fork Ranch‘s sparkling gingersnaps cookie recipe lay the groundwork here. Minus the caramel that was already made to melt, then reform, you could make your own caramel, or use spiced apple chunks along with cut up caramel candies. Your call.

Read on for the recipe.

Caramel apple spice cookies:

3 small Fuji apples, medium dice

pinch of kosher salt

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1 packet of caramel

1/2 cup shortening

1/2 cup butter, softened

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup light brown sugar

1 egg

1/4 cup molasses

2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 tsp ground cloves

1 tsp kosher salt

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

splash of milk

1) Place diced Fuji apples in a large bowl and sprinkle with a pinch of salt and 1/2 tsp cinnamon. Set the apples aside.

2) In another large bowl, sift flour, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and baking soda. Set those ingredients aside.

3) Warm caramel until it is fairly pliable. Pour the caramel (about 3/4 cup) over the apples and stir to coat. My caramel ended up a little too runny, so I put the bowl in the freezer for about 15 minutes to firm it up.

4) While the apple and caramel mixture is setting, cream the shortening and butter with the white and brown sugars. Add the egg and molasses, stir thoroughly to combine.

5) Incorporate the dry ingredients until the dough is clump-free. If it appears too dry, add a splash of milk. Fold in the caramel apples.

6) Press the dough into an ice cream scoop and turn it out onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet, leaving room between each dough mound. Bake the cookies at 350 degrees for 7 minutes, turn the pan, bake for 5 to 6 more minutes. They will look a little underdone when they come out of the oven — this is OK; they will finish cooking on the pan. After about 12 to 15 minutes, move the cookies from the pan to a wire rack to finish cooling.

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