Smooth, sweet, buttery caramel makes the perfect coating to surround crisp, tart apples. Once dipped in mixed chopped nuts or a combination of chocolate shavings, you’ll have the perfect Autumn snack to share. I’ve teamed up with TalaCooking to bring you this super delicious treat using some of their amazing products.
But first, I know it’s been a red hot minute since I’ve been here on my blog. For those that don’t know…I’m writing, developing, styling and shooting my very own cookbook. Yes that’s right…it is one hundred percent my work! Amazing right!. With that comes A LOT of work and there literally aren’t enough hours in the day to do it all. So unfortunately I had to sideline the blog for a little while. But I’ve come out the other side of an intense patch and can see the clouds clearing, so over the next little while I can slowly get back into this space here.
Now, let’s get back to these delicious Caramel Apples. I used to love the toffee apples wrapped in cellophane that the supermarkets would sell at this time of year. But did biting into that hard toffee feel like I was breaking my teeth? You bet ‘ya! So I was super happy when Tala Cooking approached me to share a recipe for Caramel Apples that were a bit more bite friendly! The caramel sets but doesn’t go rock solid which is perfect for little mouths or aging teeth with fillings!
What equipment should I use when making Caramel Apples?
Before making any form of caramel, I strongly advise that you get everything out and ready – I mean equipment and ingredients. Have it all ready to go. And I personally don’t let the kids near the kitchen whilst I’m doing this as firstly I don’t want their distractions and secondly I want them accidentally knocking the pan in our tiny kitchen. Caramel Apples are fun and you only need a handful of ingredients and equipment to make them.
- Heavy based saucepan. Firstly for dunking your apple in boiling water to remove the wax. And then making the caramel in.
- Dry Cooks Measure – this is a super easy way to measure out your ingredients. So handy.
- Tongs – Using Stainless Steel Tongs with Silicon Head make this the easiest and safest way to dunk your apples
- Candy Thermometre. This is a must. Once all your caramel ingredients are bubbling away in the saucepan, you’ll need to get it up to ‘soft ball’ stage which is F/C. The most accurate way to do this is through Tala’s Candy Thermometre. It clips on the side preventing it from slipping into the saucepan and you can read the temperature easily.
- Wooden spoon. You’ll need to stir the caramel the whole time it is heating up to prevent it from catching on the bottom of the saucepan. A wooden spoon is the best utensil so as not to scratch your pan.
- Wooden Skewers. You need to be able to dip the apples in the caramel without touching them and these Bamboo Skewers do the trick!
- Terrine Jars. Chop all your nuts and grate your chocolate and store them in Tala’s Lever Arm Terrine Jars for easy storage. If you don’t use them all you can store these jars in your pantry ready to top another dessert on another day. The Tala Preserving Label’s makes them super easy to identify.
- Pan To place your caramel apples in once they have been dipped and coated. Tala’s Enamel Roaster makes it easy to tranistion the apples to the fridge to set.
How do you make Caramel Apples?
Making caramel might feel daunting but seriously it quite a simple process.
Firstly dunk the apples into boiling water and rub them with a teatowel to remove the wax. Doing this step helps the caramel to stick. Alternatively you can buy unwaxed apples.
Melt the butter in the heavy based saucepan and then add the sugar, cream and golden syrup. Bringing to the boil and continue to bubble away until the temperature reaches 115C (240F). Once is reaches this temperature add the vanilla bean paste, careful as it will bubble up and stir to combine.
Next pour the caramel into a high sided bowl and allow the temperature to drop to 100C (212F). Whilst waiting pour your toppings onto a shallow plates.
Now one by one holding the apple by the skewer, dip the apple until fully coated. Lift it out of the caramel and allow the excess to drip off. Then lift it up until it is upside down for 30 seconds or so. Then roll in the chopped nuts or mixed chocolate shavings.
Place on a tray lined with baking paper and refrigerate immediately to set. Repeat quickly with all the apples before the caramel sets to hard.
Keep the Caramel apples in the fridge for 30 minutes or so and then enjoy.
What type of apples should you use?
The caramel is sweet, there is no denying that, so my preference is to go for a crisp, tart apple to counteract the sweetness of the caramel. Here I used Braeburn apples but if you prefer a green skinned apple then go for a Granny Smith.
If you don’t fancy apples then pears are also a good choice. I’ve made Toffee Pears in the past and they were delectable!!
What other toppings can I use on Caramel Apples ?
I mean, really you can coat your apples in whatever you think of. Thats the bonus of them – they are combletely customizable to your own likes. My favourite has to be the mixed nuts. There is something about that combination of nuts, caramel and apple that screams Autumn!
- Chopped hazelnuts
- Mini marshmallows
- Crushed pretzels
- Mini m&m’s
- Cinnamon Sugar
- Toasted Coconut
For more Autumn recipes, checkout the following recipes :
- Wooden skewers
- Candy thermometer
- 6 large tart apples, Braeburn or Granny Smith’s
- 170 g unsalted butter
- 330 g light brown sugar, packed
- 180 ml golden syrup
- 180 ml condensed milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 150 g chocolate shavings (white, milk and dark)
- 120 g nuts (pistachio, peanuts, walnuts), chopped
- Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Using tongs, dip apples into boiling water for a few seconds, then dry with a tea towel to remove wax from the apple peel. Ignore this step if you have unwaxed apples. Set apples aside; when completely cool, insert a wooden skewer firmly into each apple's bottom for a handle.
- Refrigerate your apples. A cold apple will cool the caramel as it goes on, which will help it stick better. This step isn’t essential, but if possible, refrigerate your apples for at least 30 minutes before proceeding.
- Line a baking tray with parchment paper. Get all your ingredients for the caramel ready. Prepare your toppings by pouring the mixed chopped nuts and mixed chocolate shavings into two separate shallow bowls.
- In a deep-sided heavy-bottomed saucepan, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Stir in the brown sugar, golden syrup and condensed milk with a wooden spoon (constantly stir to ensure the caramel doesn’t stick on the bottom of the pan).
- Remove the pan from the heat. Set the pan aside and let it cool slightly, about 3 to 5 minutes, until it registers about 100°C (212°F). The caramel will thicken slightly as it starts to cool. Using mitts, carefully transfer the caramel into a bowl.
- Dip each apple into the hot caramel to completely coat the apple, let the excess caramel drip off. Then hold it upside down for 30 seconds to allow the caramel to cool slightly and settle. Next, dip three apples into the mixed chopped nuts, and then the remaining three apples into the chocolate shavings — place apples on the prepared tray and straight into the fridge to set.
All recipes are developed and tested in Metric grams. I strongly recommend that you bake using digital scales for a more accurate result. I have provided a conversion to US customary in the recipe but please note that I haven’t tested using this method.