mini caramel apples
These teeny caramel apples from Sunset magazine are a lot easier to eat than the full size ones! The mini apple spheres are actually made with a melon baller and the recipe includes instructions to make a homemade caramel coating. I would probably just use the caramel apple dip in the produce section from the grocery store that we use to make the typical caramel apples. I’m sure that lollipop sticks could be substituted if there are no appropriate twigs to be found! Fall colored sprinkles, nuts or granola add a pretty finishing touch.
Mini Caramel Apples
3/4 cup light corn syrup
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter
About 1 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream, divided
1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
1/2 cup decorative mini orange candies
2 large red apples
About 20 slender but sturdy food-safe twigs, such as magnolia twigs, or craft sticks
1. Heat corn syrup, sugar, butter, and 3/4 cup plus 2 tbsp. cream in a 3-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat until mixture reaches 275° on a candy thermometer*, about 15 minutes, stirring often with the thermometer or a wooden spoon once it starts to brown. While caramel boils, prepare the remaining ingredients (you’ll need to have everything ready before beginning step 3).
2. Grease a baking sheet and set aside. Put nuts, chocolate chips, and candies on individual plates and set aside. Using a 1-in. melon baller, cut apples into balls (you should get 8 to 10 from each apple). Push thickest end of a twig into each apple ball through skin side to center. Set on paper towels to absorb moisture.
3. Remove caramel from heat when at 275° and pour in remaining 1/4 cup cream, stirring until very smooth (it will come together after about 1 minute) and being careful of any splattering caramel.
4. Dip apple balls into caramel, making sure caramel comes over edges of skin and letting excess drip off. Dip bottom of each ball into either nuts, chocolate chips, or candies, then set on the baking sheet to cool.
*You’ll need an accurate candy thermometer. Check it by immersing in boiling water; it should read 212°. If it’s a few degrees too high or low, cook the caramel to a corresponding few degrees more or less. If it’s way off, get a new thermometer.
Make ahead: Chill until ready to serve, up to 3 hours ahead. Serve at room temperature.