Whenever I am in the kitchen, my daughter in not too far behind. She loves to help when I am cooking. So I’m always looking for “jobs” she can do to contribute. I came across a wonderful recipe that is geared towards small hands: chocolate tortoises. Because what kid doesn’t love food that looks like animals? They can count and arrange the legs (or cashews), place the caramel on top, and add the pecan shell over the chocolate. And they are amazed to see the tortoises take shape with their pecan shell.
These little guys also make a great gift. Simply place the tortoises individually in a nice baking cup and place in a box.
48 roasted cashews
12 roasted hazelnuts
12 roasted pecans
12 soft caramels
4 oz. semisweet chocolate
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. On a parchment lined rimmed baking sheet, make 12 clusters by arranging 4 cashews and 1 hazelnut (the cashews will be the tortoises’ legs, and the hazelnuts, the heads). With your fingers, gently flatten caramels and place one on top of each cluster.
Bake until caramels just begin to melt, 6-8 minutes. Meanwhile, melt chocolate on the stove until melted. Dollop 1 teaspoon chocolate onto each caramel and top with a pecan. Refrigerate until chocolate sets, about 30 minutes (or up to 2 days). Bring to room temperature before serving.