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Caramel Apples:


We used real twigs for a fun look that's natural and rustic.



Ingredients:
9 clean twigs 10 - 18 inches in length
9 apples, cleaned and thoroughly dried (choose your favorite variety, we used Honeycrisp)
3 cups sugar
6 Tbs. light corn syrup
3/4 cup water
3/4 cup heavy cream
5 Tbs. unsalted butter
2 tsp. vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1 lb. milk or dark chocolate
2 cups chopped nuts (choose your favorite, we used hazelnuts)

Instructions:

  1. Using course sand paper, sand one end of each twig into a point. Push the pointed end into the center core of each apple from the top. Be careful not go go all the way through the apple.

  2. Mix the sugar, corn syrup and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat stirring until the sugar is just dissolved. Continue cooking, swirling the pan (don't stir at this point) until the mixture turns light amber and a candy thermometer reads 320° (about 10 minutes). Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Whisk in the heavy cream, salt, vanilla and 4 tablespoons of the butter. Return to low heat and whisk until smooth. Remove from heat and let caramel cool until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.

  3. Dip each apple into the caramel and let the excess drip off. You can coat the apple completely or partially as we did. Place the apples on a baking sheet lined with wax paper and refrigerate until the caramel is firm. In the meantime, toast the nuts under a low broiler until just golden.

  4. Melt the chocolate and remaining butter in a double-boiler or on a low setting in the microwave. Carefully stir the chocolate to insure there are no un-melted chunks. Dip each apple in the chocolate and let the excess drip off. Rotating each apple sprinkle the chopped nuts all around the chocolate, return to the baking sheet and refrigerate until firm.

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