Saturday, October 25, 2008

Homemade Caramel Apples

This afternoon, my kids and a few of their friends got together (with my help) to create and enjoy one of fall's tastiest traditions - homemade caramel apples! These days, it is even easier than ever to candy apples. Just gather the ingredients listed below and set out some plates lined with wax paper and coated with baking spray. (Today, I was in a pinch and used foil instead of wax paper).

Next, gather your cooks together. I've found that ages 6 and up can create especially delicious homemade caramel apples without too much adult assistance! You can help younger children, ages 3-6, with spooning the melted caramel over the apples. Always supervise kids near a stovetop!

  • 4-5 firm apples (red delicious, golden delicious or fuji)
  • popsicle sticks
  • 14 oz. (1 bag) of caramel candies
  • decorative candies or nuts (smaller work best.... we like using Halloween cookie sprinkles)

To make your homemade caramel apples, first wash and then dry the apples. Remove any stickers too! Firmly press a single popsicle stick into the top of each apple.

In a medium saucepan, place unwrapped caramel candies and stir in 2 tablespoons of water. Melt slowly over low heat, stirring frequently. If desired, you may want to add 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Stir well. Test the caramel by allowing it to run off a spoon into the saucepan. You'll be able to determine your desired consistency. Fairly runny caramel will coat the apples better and will solidify when cool later.

One at a time, take an apple and hold it over the saucepan. With young children, you should turn the stove off. Drip caramel over the apple, repeating until its coated. Hold the apple above the saucepan until the caramel stops dripping. Place onto wax paper. Decorate with nuts or candy. We found that rolling the homemade caramel apples in the sprinkles worked best.

Allow the caramel apples to cool and set - about 1-2 hours. Then, enjoy!

If you love the taste of caramel apples, then you must eat them for breakfast! Seriously, caramel apple french toast is a delicious harvest treat. Save it for the lazy weekends - enjoy it all the way through November!

For another take on homemade caramel apples, check out this spooky video with Sandra Lee:

I'd better go - I think the apples are ready for eating now!

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