These apples scream October.
The calendar says it’s October fifteenth.
The weather says it’s December fifteenth.
Well, at least where I live. I hear it was seventy in Cleveland yesterday. Actually, I even got to see how summery and warm Cleveland looked yesterday. I was sent a video of my eldest brother on his drive home from work in his new ride. It’s a beat up old pick-up that he stole from my cousin and then finally just bought it from my uncle when his 1980’s Mercedes bit the dust.
The pick-up is a step up, but not by much.
Ah actually? My poor cousin Matt. I guess Creighton taking his car means he’s out of a car. Bummer.
FYI – The above photo, the one with the dirty hands holding the stick? Yeah, I promise those are not mine. Nope, those would be my younger teenage brother’s hands. Boys are disgusting.
My hands are in all the remaining photos. The tiny shriveled up hands. I do WAY too many dishes.
Anyway, it’s snowing like mad here.
It was snowing the day I made these caramel apples.
It’s still snowing four days later.
Alright, so we had a three-day break, but it sure feels darn cold.
Whatever, I am all about fall and doing fall things.
Even if it means carving pumpkins in the snow
If you think you can’t make caramel apples, think again.
They are actually really quick and easy, but you do have to have a candy thermometer. Really, it’s a must.
In order to get the perfect caramel for your apples you have to let the caramel reach about 235 degrees F. If it goes above 245 degrees F, your caramel is going to be rock hard. So invest in a candy thermometer. Trust me, it is so worth it and you will end up using it all the time. Now is an especially good time to get one with the holidays coming up!
Then all you need to do is find some twigs or sticks or whatever you can stick into your apples to hold on to them. Then just dip, roll in pecans and drizzle with chocolate. Let ‘em sit (or not, I totally did not) for fifteen to thirty minutes and then devour!!
Oh and can we talk about the sweet and spicy cinnamon bourbon pecans? Seriously, I could eat a couple of these a day.
Sweet and Salty Bourbon Cinnamon Pecan Caramel Apples + Chocolate Drizzle
*Caramel is lightly adapted from [Cooking Light | http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/caramel-apples-10000002012809/]
Yields: 6 Apples
- Sweet and Salty Bourbon Cinnamon Pecans
- 1 egg white
- 2-3 tablespoons bourbon
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 cup finely chopped raw pecans
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup light corn syrup
- 1/2 cup bourbon (you may use apple cider or water)
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips, melted
- 6 of of your favorite apples (I used granny smith and honeycrisp)
- 6 twigs or wooden sticks
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil or a silicone baking mat. In a bowl whisk together the egg white, bourbon, vanilla, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt until frothy. Add pecans and stir to coat evenly. Transfer nuts to prepared baking pan. Bake for 15 to 25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until toasted. Allow to cool 10 minutes and then remove from the pan and add to a shallow dish that will allow you to easily roll the apples in the pecans.
While the nuts roast, start the caramel. Push the twigs or wooden sticks into the top of the apples. Return apples to the refrigerator until caramel is ready for dipping. Line a baking sheet with wax paper.
Place sugar, corn syrup, and bourbon in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, boil, without stirring, 9 minutes or until light golden. Add the heavy cream, butter, vanilla, and salt, slowly stirring into pan. Boil until candy thermometer reaches 235°, stirring frequently. This took me a total of about 25 minutes.
Swirl apples in caramel, allow the excess caramel to drip off and then drag the bottom half of your apple through the pecans. Place on baking sheet lined with wax paper. Repeat with remaining apples.
Let the caramel apples set for about 15-30 minutes (in the fridge or on the counter), then drizzle each apple with melted chocolate. Dig in and get messy!
- Preparation time: 15 minutes
- Cook time: 30 minutes
- Total time: 1 hour
An apple a day? Yes, please!