how not to make candy apples, or: those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it

Many of you have, by now, read about our candy-apple making foray in the past. Some of you may have only clicked and wet yourself reading about it last week. Suffice to say, in one way or another, Middle and I seem to screw up some part of this relatively easy process each time we attempt it.

I was very careful this year. I chose apples that were medium sized so that they would be easier to bite into, I washed and dried them thoroughly, I set out all of the necessary ingredients long before they were needed and I put a Silpat down on the counter in readiness.

I read the recipe. We deliberated several different pot/bowl/boiler combinations in search of the perfect contraption for boiling the sugar. We had additional boiling water standing by in the event that the water under the double boiler boiled off. We even had enough sticks to ensure that each member of the household would have an apple.

And, lo, the process did begin.
Sugar and corn syrup were combined and placed in the top of the double boiler.
It was stirred gently to combine as the water underneath it came slowly up to boiling.
290 degrees was the temperature we sought for the sugar mixture.
290 was very very slow in arriving.
We laughed.
I cleaned the kitchen.
He filmed the process.
What seemed like hours (but was really about 45 minutes) passed. I had already switched out the bottom pot for a smaller one for better contact between boiling water below and sugar above.
We waited longer.
And then it occurred to me that, perhaps, we could just put the sugar mixture pot directly onto the fire. A novel idea!
I double-checked the recipe. Was a double boiler called for?
We were supposed to place the pan of sugar directly over the heat!
And, so, with this new configuration of sugar and fire? We were done in about 8 minutes.
I did a very professional job dipping the apples in the molten sugar...I placed them gently on the Silpat. They did not stick and cooled quickly AND THEY TASTE PRETTY DAMN GOOD.

good apples

I have made a notation in the cookbook.

notation use



KPB said…
I love your family, your kitchen and your notations.
I was browsing through your Flicker pictures the other night (really, I'm not a stalker!)
When I saw the cookbook picture I nearly peed my pants!
Dani said…
So that's where the word asshat came from. It's to put on your Ass Head! ;)

Glad it worked!
Anonymous said…
The last three words of the notation are the most important.
robiewankenobie said…
*cries* at the notation.
RW said…
brave of you to give it another go!

have you ever tried caramel apples?
Anonymous said…
Thank you for the picture of Silpat. I was going to have to google it after last year's comments...
MsCellania said…
That is one cherry cookbook notation - and will actually save your ass in the future.
I have dire warnings noted in my cookbooks - "Totally sucked!" and "Don't make a day ahead or you'll have mush!" But no Ass Heads yet. I think that is uniquely bb's...
Wow - look at those dazzling choppers on that boy!
Anonymous said…
Well, KUDOS to you for trying again after the, um, mishap last year.
They look enchanted and inviting indeed
WF SKERI (can you believe this?)
Wendy said…
My mom makes notations in her cookbooks. I'd like a few of them someday, not for the recipes, but for her notes. Not sure she used the term "ass head" though.

(My verification is "raves"!)
Kathy Rogers said…
I forgot what I was going to say, because my verification is "ingoo."

In goo.

That is all.
Anonymous said…
Nice apples! And your cookbook is funny. "Now, work quickly"! "The hard-crack stage"--what in the world? Personally, I require a cookbook that says "take an egg and break it into the bowl--but don't let the shells get into the bowl, ass head. Throw them away!"

Anonymous said…
Oh yum! I need to leave more notes to myself on my recipes--someday when the dementia sets in I'll need the reminders of how to REALLY make things.
Anonymous said…

You figured out the secret to candy apples.
Mrs. G. said…
Perfect. This is the kind of writing in books that I can get behind. Yikes, who did the dishes?
layjent said…
Wahoo! glad it worked this year!(although in honesty the previous--err hmm disaster--was what brought me to your blog in the first place)
Mary said…
This post made me laugh out loud of course but ASS HEAD? ASS HEAD?

Oh I love me a new term of endearment!
Anonymous said…
I need you to know that the note you left in your cookbook is the first serious guttural laugh I have had in a rather long time.
Thank you.
Major Bedhead said…
Thousands of years from now, when an archeologist unearths your cookbook, reams of doctoral dissertations will be written debating the meaning of the words ass head.

See the service you're providing to future generations?
Unknown said…
Have I mentioned how much I totally covet your kitchen? Even a glimpse of a sink fulla dishes does not deter me from WANTING that sink. And your stove. And your cabinets. And your floor.


As you were...

(my WV is patti, whoever the hell she is...)
Outnumbered2to1 said…
Bwhaahaahaa! Ass it. We tried to make carmel apples but apparently you need FRESH carmel. The year-old carmel I dug out from the back of the cabinet just formed globs. Yum!

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