Turtle Thumbprints have all the flavors you love from turtle candies in a convenient bite-sized cookie. Buttery shortbread cookies compliment the classic combination of chocolate and caramel.
Combine butter, sugar, egg yolks and vanilla in large bowl. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy. Reduce speed to low; add flour. Beat until well mixed. Cover; refrigerate until firm (at least 1 hour).
Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Place 1 inch apart onto ungreased cookie sheets. Make indentation in center of each cookie with thumb or back of teaspoon. (Edges may crack slightly.) Bake for 7 to 10 minutes or until edges begin to brown. Cool completely.
Combine caramels and whipping cream in medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on HIGH (100% power) 1 minute; stir. Continue microwaving 1 minute or until melted; stir until smooth. Spoon about ½ teaspoon caramel mixture into center of each cookie. Top with pecan half.
Place chocolate chips and shortening in small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on HIGH (100% power) 1 minute; stir. Continue microwaving 30 seconds or until melted; stir until smooth. Drizzle over cooled caramel. Let stand until set (about 2 hours).
TIP: To make ahead, bake cookies but do not prepare filling or drizzle. Place cooled cookies between sheets of waxed paper in container with tight-fitting lid. Freeze for up to 2 months. On day of serving, top cookies with filling and drizzle as directed.