Chocolate Caramel Apples with Nuts


Food makes me so happy, and caramel apples don’t fail me in that department.  This past Halloween, I couldn’t think of a treat I wanted more than a caramel apple.  Wishing for a little more flavor complexity, I added chocolate and nuts. 

The first time I made this delicious treat was for a Halloween party.  They turned out great, except for two little hitches. 

First, I was so worried about them melting that I kept them in the fridge until it was time to serve them.  No bueno.  The chocolate and caramel were incredibly hard, making eating a difficult (and possibly dangerous?) endeavor.  I cut the apples into slices to get around that, but that kind of takes the fun away from eating this treat off of a stick. 

That brings me to the second hitch.  Instead of sticks (which I could not find), I used plastic forks.  It worked in a pinch, but isn’t the best option.  The apples were so heavily laden in their sweet goodie treats that some of the plastic fork tines broke off when I swirled the apples in the caramel or chocolate. 

For my second attempt at this treat, I decided to switch to metal forks, though I was nostalgic for the little wooden sticks.  Two grocery stores I checked didn’t have them, and I wasn’t going to make an extra trip to an arts and crafts store to find them.  The metal forks worked out great. 

I did run into some sticky fun – actually not so much fun – when I decided to increase the milk in the caramels.  You see, for the first batch of apples, I found that swirling the apples in caramel wasn’t as easy as I’d imagined.  So, I thought, why not make the caramels a little more liquidy and less creamy?  It didn’t work out the way I envisioned it.  The milkier caramel sauce resulted in caramel that was more prone to running than sticking (see picture above).  That resulted in stubborn little caramel apples that didn’t want to budge from the wax paper.  Trust me when I say that pulling strips and patches of wax paper off of caramel apples isn’t the best use of your time. 

After a couple of attempts, I’m pretty happy with the final recipe below.  They are delicious!  I hope you try them.

Construction Tips… “Swirling” the entire apple isn’t as easy as it sounds.  When I swirled the apples, I discovered it was much easier to twist the bottom half of the apples partially in the sauce and use the back of a spoon to coat the top of the apple.  I moved the spoon up and down while I swirled the apple around.  When coating, make sure to cover the inserted part of handle with the caramel or chocolate as that helps it stay in.  Also, to help prevent the caramel from sticking to the wax paper, try greasing it lightly with butter.

Serving Tips… Serve at room temperature if you’d like the chocolate and caramel to be soft.  Otherwise, taken straight out of the fridge, I recommend cutting the apple into slices for easier (and safer) eating.

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