I am loving this gorgeous fall! We have had the most amazing weather this last week. It’s been 70 degrees and sunny, allowing us to be outside and enjoy the beautiful colorful leaves and crispness of the air.
I taught Carly how to step on the leaves to crunch them. Her tiny stomping feet is the cutest! I love helping Carly discover our beautiful world and seeing the joy and excitement in her eyes, although I’m not too pleased with her fascination with sand. Why do playgrounds even have that?! It gets EVERYWHERE! She even tried to eat it. Twice! Am I not feeding her enough??
My mom recently came to town to visit us or I should really say, to see Carly. It was so much fun to be with my mom and for Carly to get to know grandma better. We had such a fun time going to the zoo, pumpkin patch, and cooking LOTS of food… including these yummy caramel apples.
The caramel is my mom’s recipe that she has made hundreds of times. She makes tons of caramels each winter as Christmas gifts for friends and family. Cooking this yummy caramel produces the most wonderful sweet smell that brings back so many good childhood memories of the holiday season.
I’m so glad I made these with my mom in town because having an extra set of hands made these so much easier to make. Not sure they would have looked so good if I was doing it on my own. I definitely recommend enlisting a second pair of hands, even if it’s a child.
These are amazingly delicious and a great way to eat more fruit. 😉 No, it’s really a way to eat more caramel and chocolate. I love the pairing of a sour apple and sweet caramel. YUM!
Gourmet Caramel Apples
- 10 large Granny Smith apples
- 10 sticks
- 2 cups white sugar
- 3/4 cup dark corn syrup
- 3/4 cup 1 1/2 sticks butter
- 2 cups cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 2/3 cup chocolate chips
- 2/3 cup white chocolate chips
Wash and dry apples*. Place apples in the fridge to chill and make the caramel.
In a 4 quart pot, bring sugar, corn syrup, butter, and 1 cup of the cream to a boil over medium-high heat. Heat the second cup of cream in the microwave and then add it to the boiling caramel in a slow stream while stirring (don't let it stop boiling or caramel will be sugary). Stir frequently as mixture begins to thicken and then constantly as it darkens. Cook until it reaches 236** degrees F (20-25 minutes). Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Let caramel cool for 5 minutes.
Insert the sticks into apples. Tilt the apple as you dip and swirl to coat the apple all the way around. Hold the apple over the pan while spinning and let the caramel drip back into the pan. Immediately roll the bottom half of the apple in chopped pecans and hold it upside down to let it set for a few seconds and then place on parchment paper. (The longer you are able to hold the apple upside down and swirling the better. You have to dip the apples quickly before the caramel cools too much so if possible, have an extra pair of hands help with the dipping.)
Melt chocolate chips separately at 50% power in 30 second increments until melted and then pour into bags, cut a hole and drizzle on. (I drizzled while my mom spun the apple.)
Allow the caramel and chocolate to set (3-4 hours) and then wrap in cellophane or cellophane bags and tie with ribbon.
(I recommend cutting the apple to eat it.)
*Dip apples in boiling hot water for a few seconds to melt and remove wax.
**Make sure your candy thermometer is calibrated correctly. Boil some water and allow the thermometer to sit in the water for a few minutes. Make sure it's not touching the bottom. The thermometer should read 212 when the water is at a rapid boil. If not, adjust thermometer or take difference into account when cooking the caramel.