I (try to) maintain a low carb diet but when it is my birthday, I indulge in something I don't typically allow myself to eat. This year I decided on CARAMEL APPLES as my "special" treat. I had been to Fifer's Orchards (I always knew it as Fifer's Fruit Farm) a few days before my birthday to buy apples just so I could make them myself.
I chose braeburn apples because they were on the small side (the proper caramel to apple ratio is of utmost importance) and the description of them sounded just right. I like sweet apples but wanted to use a variety that was a bit on the tart side so that it wouldn't be overly sweet once it was laden with caramel and chocolate.
The recipe and procedure I used can be found here. There is no need for me to reinvent the wheel on this post since her pictures and step-by-step instructions are plentiful and easy. I didn't use the chocolate drizzle method that she used because I didn't have a squeeze bottle nor did I want to purchase one. I don't make things like this often enough to warrant it. I just used a spoon, and you can clearly see that the end result wasn't nearly as tidy.
When it came time to gather the ingredients, I found that the only thing I needed to get was a bag of caramels. I had half a bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips and half a bag of dark chocolate morsels that I mixed for the drizzle. The cinnamon almonds were left from our weekend getaway to Luray, Virginia. You can read about the trip starting here. I used thin wooden skewers for this because it is what I had. I think heavier ones would be a better choice to have a little more control over the apple, especially if it is larger.
The above picture is after dipping in the caramel and rolling in the chopped almonds. I put the 2 "uglies" up front so that you could see 2 problems I had. The apple that is front row, center, has a shortage of caramel. It was the last one that I dipped. These apples were pretty small so you may want to adjust the recipe or use fewer apples. The other problem is on the front row right. This is what happens when you don't dry your apple well. The caramel slides and puddles around the bottom. Edible, yes. Pretty, no.
Just to tell you about the "uglies". In our house, the imperfect treats that I make (a.k.a. uglies) are desirable. They are the ones we get to taste-test right away, right out of the oven or refrigerator, whichever the case may be. The perfect and near-perfect ones go to friends or neighbors so in order for our family to get them, they've got to have flaws.
I also tried coating apple slices with caramel. That didn't work at all since I couldn't get them dry enough for the caramel to stick.
I am so completely content that I chose these very sweet treat for my special day. They were fun to make and exactly what I'd been craving to eat. Next time I'll probably take a little more care to make them prettier so that I can share with a few friends. Or will I?...