So it seems, our California weather is finally realizing we are now in the middle of October and it’s indeed Fall. Thank God! We are now seeing more temperate temperatures with the last few days in the friendly eighties.
As much as I love finding asparagus in abundance, I am so ready for chilly days and cozy nights! And what better way to embrace this season than carnival-style caramel apples?
Caramel apples are definitely the easiest, yummiest and most fun treat you can make this Fall. A generous coat of creamy-sweet caramel and crunchy peanuts kicks up vitamin-rich tart apples from healthy to indulgent. I used chopped peanuts for an additional layer of yum but you can easily gourmet them up with melted chocolate drizzles, crushed Oreo cookies, graham cracker crumbs, M & M’s, toffee bits, colored sprinkles, mini marshmallows, raw cane sugar, chopped peanut butter cups, or even your favorite morning cereal.
Caramel apples not only make a delicious anytime-of-the-day pick-me-upper, they are also awesome as party favors or holiday gifts. Make a huge batch, these babies keep well for several days!
- boiling water
- 8 Granny Smith apples
- 1 cup butter
- 2 cups brown sugar
- 1 cup light corn syrup
- 1 (14 ounces) can condensed milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups chopped peanuts
- 8 wooden sticks
- Candy thermometer
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Dip apples in boiling water for about 3 to 5 seconds. Gently wipe down surface with paper towels to remove any wax residue on skin. Pat dry. Insert a wooden stick at the center of each apple through the stem end. Make sure apples are at room temperature.
- In a sauce pan over medium high heat , combine butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, and condensed milk. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Lower heat to medium and continue to cook, stirring constantly for about 25 to 30 minutes or until a candy thermometer reads 248 degrees F. The caramel should coat back of spoon. Check by dropping a teaspoon of the syrup in a glass of cold water. It's ready if it forms into a firm ball. Remove caramel from heat and add vanilla extract, stirring to combine.
- Quickly dip each apple into the hot caramel, swirling apples in sauce to completely to about ½ inch of the wooden handle. Allow excess caramel to drip back to pan. Immediately (while the caramel is still hot) roll apples on peanuts to fully coat. Sprinkle peanuts on missed spots. Arrange apples stick side up on prepared baking sheet. Allow to completely cool.