Caramel Apples

I've been eyeing those caramel apples in the window of Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory for a few months now. I'm not a big fan of caramel apples myself but they just look so gorgeous! I decided to try my hand at them and they are very very easy to make (even the caramel from scratch!) and very cheap. I'd say the cost of ingredients was about $10 for a dozen "gourmet" caramel apples- You can only get 1 fancy caramel apple for that price at the shop ;)

I used a caramel candy recipe and modified the instructions to make it apple dip-able. I made four different types- stealing two of the most popular ones from the chocolate shop. There is regular with chocolate drizzle, regular with chocolate and peanuts, snickers and apple pie. The snickers caramel apple was made by rolling the apple in chopped up snickers bars and drizzling dark chocolate all over it. The apple pie flavor was made by dipping the caramel apple in white chocolate, then rolling it in a mixture of crushed cinnamon toast crunch cereal, brown sugar and cinnamon.

I got a chance to try the plain flavor, the snickers caramel apple and the one rolled in chocolate and peanuts- now I understand why caramel apples are so popular! The sweet, soft and sticky caramel balances out the granny smith apple perfectly.

Caramel Apples

· 1 cup butter

· 1 pound light brown sugar (2.5 cups)

· 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

· 1 cup light corn syrup

· 1/2 tsp salt

· 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
12 Large Granny Smith Apples or 16-20 small ones


B Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Dip apples into boiling water briefly, using a slotted spoon, to remove any wax that may be present. Wipe dry, and set aside to cool. Insert sticks into the apples through the cores. (Tip: use a clean pencil sharpener to sharpen thick wooden sticks) Put in fridge.

In a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium heat, combine the butter, brown sugar, sweetened condensed milk, corn syrup and salt. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Heat to between 234 and 240 degrees F (112 to 116 degrees C), or until a small amount of syrup dropped into cold water forms a soft ball that flattens when removed from the water and placed on a flat surface. Cook for 2 minutes at that temperature. Remove from the heat and stir in vanilla.

Pour caramel into a metal bowl. Cool until temperature reaches 200 F. Take apples out of fridge one by one and dip in caramel. Place on a silpat or waxed paper. The caramel will drip down the sides of the apple a little. Put the apples back in the fridge for 10-15 minutes. If you have extra caramel,use it to dip marshmallows, pretzels, potato chips or anything else cool in your pantry that would taste good dipped in caramel.

After 10-15 minutes the caramel will have hardened a little. Take the apples out of the fridge 1 by 1 and press the pooled caramel back onto the apple. Now roll in whatever coatings you want or dip in chocolate! Chill for at least an hour and serve.

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