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Friday, October 28, 2011

Candy Apples

This is the time of year when we look forward to those yummy feel good foods.  This year I got inspired by the October issue of Family Circle in an article called "Sugar Coat it"  With two fall parties on the calendar for this weekend and Halloween night on Monday I thought this would be a great opportunity to try some of the candy apple recipes there. I also did a few variations of my own.  There is a learning curve involved in this so I will try to share any tips to make this easier for you if you try to do this yourself.

The inspiration magazine article showing pictures and the three recipes.
Step one:  Wash each apple being sure to rub all the wax off.

I decided to use bamboo skewers for the sticks.  They were too long so I used garden snips to cut them down to size.  I then stabbed each one through the top center and they were ready to be dipped.

Red Hot Apples:  Use 2 cups of red hots in a microwave safe dish, with 3 T water and begin melting 30 sec. at a time stirring in-between until all candy is melted and smooth.  While holding the stick dip each apple into the candy coating.  Tip the bowl as needed to get complete coverage.  Let me warn you this stuff is sticky!! It also hards quickly and I didn't realize how soon it was harden.  I didn't get my sprinkles on very good for this reason.  After dipping place each apple on waxed paper or parchment paper sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.  Immediately sprinkle with red sugar sprinkles.  2 cups of red hots will dip 6-8 medium sized apples.  Let sit to dry completely or place in refrigerator to speed up the process.
Traditional Caramel Apples:  Melt 2 bags of unwrapped caramel candy in a microwave safe dish with 3T water. (Unwrapping the candy takes more time than dipping the apples) Microwave 30 seconds at a time and stir between each melting.  Eventually it will become smooth as silk.  Now you are ready to dip.  Hold the stick and dip each apple into the caramel.  Tip the bowl to allow for complete coverage.  After dipping each one set on wax paper or parchment sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.  Immediately add topping to each.  I added chopped toffee pieces to the top of mine but the magazine suggested chopped peanuts.  
This covers 8-10 apples.

Now here is where I got messed up.  See, it was getting late and I was trying to finish up the apples when my two sons came home from the football game.  Have you ever had two teenage boys come in the kitchen when you are cooking something yummy?  Well the game called 20 questions begins..."What are you making?", "Ooh, what's that?", "Can I eat this?", "Is this chocolate?", "Are these for us or are you taking them somewhere?",  "If I can't eat this, what can I eat?",  and so on and so forth, you get the idea.  Well at this point I was busy answering questions and forgot take a picture of the melting chocolate.  So imagine you see a picture of melting chocolate here...

<chocolate, mmm, yummy, white chocolate>

Cookies and Cream Apples:  Use 6 squares of white almond bark chocolate and 3 T of vegetable oil. Some people choose to melt chocolate in a the microwave but this never works for me and I struggle with melting chocolate successfully.  You can mess it up easily.  So I use a double boiler to melt chocolate and I must remind myself to be patient during the process.  Once it is smooth and creamy you are ready to dip.  Same as before holding the stick and turning to get complete coverage.  I added chopped cookies (Oreos) and chopped candy corn to the top of each apple.  I had to press it on the apple by hand, sprinkling won't work here.  Also, candy corn is hard to chop.  I wouldn't chop it if I did this again I would probably just lay the pieces on there in some kind of pattern.    
So here you see the finished products as they are all drying. 

 I left them out overnight to "rest" and dry.  This morning I put each apple in a plastic storage bag with the stick out the top.  I tied each one up with a little piece of black or polka dot ribbon.

Pack them up in a festive basket and I am ready to take them to the parties.  Looking forward to a great Halloween weekend.  Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. What a great recipe..Im a sucker for candy apples! I hope you will link up with me here: