---------- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm) v8.05
       Title: 1991 1st Place: Caramel Pecan Treasures
  Categories: Cookies, Holiday
       Yield: 60 servings
       1 c  Butter, softened
     3/4 c  Lightly packed light
            Brown sugar
       1 ts Vanilla
   1 3/4 c  All-purpose flour
     1/2 ts Baking powder
      12 oz Semisweet chocolate chips
       1 tb Vegetable shortening
            25 to 30 caramels, cut in
            Half, rolled into balls
            Finely chopped pecans
     Preparation time: 50 minutes Cooking time: 15 minutes
      1. Heat oven to 325 degrees. Have ungreased baking sheets ready.
      2. Cream butter, sugar and vanilla in large mixer bowl until
     well-mixed. Stir in flour and baking powder. (If kitchen is warm,
     refrigerate dough for a few minutes; dough should be firm enough to
     roll easily.) Shape scant teaspoonsful of dough into balls about the
     size of a marble. Place on baking sheet, leaving about 2 inches
     between cookies. Flatten slightly.
      3. Bake until golden, about 15 minutes. Transfer to wire racks to
      4. Melt chocolate chips with shortening in top of double boiler set
     over simmering water. Remove from heat.
      5. Flatten caramel halves so they are the same diameter as the
     cookie. Put one caramel half on top of each cookie. (If necessary,
     use a dab of chocolate as “glue” to help caramel adhere to cookie.)
     Using a small metal spatula, spread melted chocolate thinly over top
     and sides of caramel and cookie to cover. Press chopped pecans onto
     tops of cookies. Let stand on a wire rack until chocolate firms
     (refrigerate if desired), about 20 minutes. Put into individual paper
     wrappers. Store in a cookie tin with a piece of wax paper between
     each layer.
      The first-place winner of the Tribune’s 1991 Holiday Cookie Contest
     is Elaine Rysner. She prefers to make the cookies small - about the
     diameter of a quarter. Use high-quality caramels and chocolate for
     the best cookies. from the Chicago Tribune fourth annual Food Guide
     Holiday Cookie Contest December 5, 1991