Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies

1/2 cup butter or margarine
2/3 cup sugar
1 egg, separated
2 Tbs. milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cocoa
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup finely chopped pecans
2 Tbs. sugar
Vanilla Filling (recipe follows)
Pecan halves

Cream butter, sugar, egg yolk, milk, and vanilla in a small bowl.  Combine flour, cocoa, and salt;  blend into creamed mixture.

Chill dough about 1 hour or until firm enough to handle.

Roll dough into 1 inch balls.  Combine chopped nuts and 2 tablespoons sugar in a small bowl.  Dip balls of cookie dough into slightly beaten egg white, then into nut mixture.

Place on lightly greased cookie sheet.  Press thumb gently into center of each cookie.  Bake at 350 degrees for 10 - 12 minutes or until set.

As soon as cookies are removed from oven, spoon about 1/4 teaspoon filling in "thumbprint".  Gently place nut in center.  Carefully remove from the cookie sheet and cool on wire racks.

Yield:  26 cookies

This was my grandmother's favorite cookie in the entire world.  I made them for her every Christmas, and she hid them from everyone.  We didn't see the tin again until it was empty.

Vanilla Filling
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 Tbs. butter or margarine, softened
2 Tbs. milk
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

Thoroughly combine ingredients in small bowl.