All my life my favorite treat has always been my mom's Caramel Cookies. None of my siblings knows where the recipe comes from, but it's securely affixed to her legacy as a master cook. She had one written copy of the recipe in her recipe box. To ensure I got the best version of her recipe I copied it word for word in the back of my Better Homes and Gardens Cook Book, labeling it "Sacred Caramel Cookies".
These very rich treats appeared at family gathering, birthdays and church socials. In my mind they were the most coveted item on the buffets. Whenever she made them I was always extra-helpful to ensure I got as many edges as I could. Being the hostess she was, she didn't like to serve the cookies from the edge of the pan because they were a little crunchy. Today I follow the same rule of gracious living and secretly and selfishly gobble the edges down.
The "Sacred" Recipe
About 50 Caramels (14oz.)
2/3 cup evaporated milk
1 box yellow cake mix
2 tablespoons cocoa
3/4 cup melted butter
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup chopped nuts
Recruit someone who wants cookies to help unwrap the 50 caramels or you'll have to do it yourself.
Preheat oven to 350 deg.
Grease and flour a 9 x 13" pan
In a large mixing bowl combine dry cake mix, 1/3 cup of the evaporated milk, 3/4 cup melted butter and nuts. By hand combine ingredients together until well blended and the dough sticks together. If the dough doesn't hold together add between 1/4 -1/2 cup flour (we always have to add some). Mix flour in until the dough is easy to handle and will press easily.
Divide the dough in 2. Press 1/2 of the dough into the bottom of the greased pan. Bake for 6 mins and then remove from oven. Mix two tablespoons cocoa into the remaining dough and set aside.
On the stove top combine remaining 1/3 cup evaporated milk and the 50 unwrapped caramels into saucepan over medium heat. Stir constantly until caramels are melted and combined with milk.
Sprinkle 1 cup of chocolate chips over the dough already baked in the pan, then pour the caramel mix over that. Take the chocolate dough and crumble over the chocolate chips and caramel. Return the pan to the oven and bake additional 15 minutes.
Remove from oven and allow to cool before serving. Cookies can be refrigerated to cool if needed for quick service.
From the kitchen of Nancy Barlow and Flair Flat
Enjoy and share them with flair,