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Steps to Complete
Place Pirouline crumbs in freezer to chill while preparing cookie dough.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, whip butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar on medium-high speed until slightly pale and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
Blend in vanilla and egg yolk, saving egg white to chill in fridge. Stir in salt and cocoa powder.
Mix in buttermilk. With mixer on low speed, slowly add in flour and mix just until combined.
Shape dough into a mound and drop onto a sheet of plastic wrap, flatten dough into a 6-inch dish, cover completely, and chill 45 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350-degrees F. Remove egg white from refrigerator and whisk vigorously until frothy. Remove Pirouline crumbs from freezer. Shape cookie dough into 1-inch balls, then working with one at a time, drop into egg white, rolling to evenly coat. Lift coated dough ball and immediately place in Pirouline crumbs, rolling to evenly coat.
Place coated cookie dough balls on greased baking sheet. Make a deep indentation with thumb in the center of each dough ball.
Bake until set, 10-12 minutes. Remove from oven and while still warm, use the bottom of a spoon to gently press down on existing indentation, creating more space for the caramel.
Cool on baking sheets for several minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
To make caramel topping, place caramels and cream in a small saucepan. Over medium heat, melt caramels and stir together until all is smooth and combined. Working quickly, spoon caramel into indentation of each cookie and sprinkle tops with a small pinch of sea salt.
Place chocolate and shortening into a microwave safe mixing bowl. Heat for 30 second intervals, stirring after each, until everything is melted and smooth. Pour into a piping or Ziplock bag, cut the tip of a corner off and drizzle over cookies. Allow chocolate to set completely before transferring to an airtight container for up to 5 days.