how not to make candy apples

Hey, so, it was, like, 7:30 pm and we, you know, we have 43 pounds of apples and so, we thought, I THOUGHT (OKAY?) that I would make a tasty treat.
How long could candy apples take, I thought amusedly, or bemusedly, or drunkenly.
Sugar, check, corn syrup, check, check, check,

the Karo device

A corn syrup transfer in progress.

We even had popsicle sticks - and you know that would have been a deal breaker, no sticks...

And so, with the recipe before us, and NOTHING BUT TIME - we begin.

apples waiting

la deee deeee...what a good mom I am!

Making candy apples at this hour!
With a double boiler no less...

...boil the syrup to 290 -

203 better

okee dokee.


let's see...


215 took a while. but if they say double boiler, it had better be double boiler - I've had sugar disasters in my day...


oh, yes, sugar disaster can even cause injuries. we don't want to go there.


I could clean up the dinner things.

...think I'll take off my shoes.


and my bra. shut up.


did Youngest just go to bed?

COOKING WITH GAS NOW, BAYBEEEE. heh heh. gas. cause my stove is, you know...


257 huh. what are we shooting for?

oh. the. boiling

Looks pretty light. shouldn't it get darker?

phone calls

K reports that he is boarding the train.
My brother reports real estate success...

soft crack, okay google?

soft crack.
SOFT CRACK...oh, so MANY juvenile jokes to be made. hard crack, firm ball...




289! 289!



more boiling

dipping apples into boiling molten sugar over the stove! and onto wax paper!

evil apples


hard to eat


apples from HELL

And, guess what?

The wax paper -

wax paper= bad idea

unless you want a little WAXED PAPER with your apple.

this is never coming off

THIS is never coming off.



we boiled off the water in the double boiler about ten minutes into the process thereby boiling the hell out of the pot and killing it.
note that the bottom of the pot and the POT ITSELF are two different things.

on to the next!


Eliane said…
No wonder your sugar didn't heat up, if there was no water. But it's 3:27 the whole time! Or isn't that the time?
Anonymous said…
ahahaha, the look on middle's face now that he's realized his teeth will not be coming apart any time soon...

i probably would've just thrown the pan away.
Priscilla said…
I never do crack anymore. Too much trouble. Haven't you heard that crack kills? Now you know.

And if you've never tried parchment paper before you should get a roll. I use it for cookies and just about everything else. Reynolds makes it and I usually get it at my local grocery. Nothing sticks to parchment, NOTHING.
Badger said…
Heeeeeheeheehee! It's funny because it didn't happen to me.

Oh, and dude? For candied apples and anything else sticky? SILPAT. Accept no substitutes. I'm frankly horrified at the thought that you might not have one. IT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE.

For real.
Paula said…
I guess the stick thing wasn't such a deal breaker after all.

I like the McGiver-ness of the forks.
lol!!! Only you can make dirty dishes look like fun!! (you know what I mean?)
Anonymous said…
Hilarious. And, yeah, that pot would have gone right into the trash can at my house, too.
--erica said…
You are a brave woman. So very brave.

perhaps Carmel apples would be safer.
These weren't meant to be carmel were they?
celestial opus said…
poor pot.

Those candy apples look a bit scary. I do belive after watching your how-to that I have never had one before. But I love the air bubbles created in the slick coating. Very cool.
Anonymous said…
You know, don't you, that you can buy that hard red candy coating in a jar at Italian delis in the city? You just heat it up and dunk?
Anonymous said…
Truly, a masterpiece.
Jennifer said…
Note to self: Never try to make candy apples.

:) Thanks for the warning of what a disaster this could be!
Keetha said…
I had a similar experience - sorta - with popcorn balls last night. Who knew it would take forfreakingever for the temp. to reach that stage??
halloweenlover said…
Ugh, your poor pot. I was wondering about the one with the candy in it. Didn't it get ruined?

I was desperate for a caramel apple this weekend, and was so sad because we couldn't find any!
Keetha said…
I have indeed been lurking! Nice to meet you, too!
Suse said…
Oh, did you cry? I would have cried ...

(we call them toffee apples - I was wondering if we were talking about the same thing and now I see we were)
girlsatplay said…
Where have I been? The digital candy thermometer? I guess I should get out more, or at least cruise Williams-Sonoma more. You are definitely braver than I am. That's one of the reason I love your blog!
Anonymous said…
sorry about your candied apple experience! we did caramel apples earlier this year and they didn't come out so hot either....
we didn't have sticks and instead we used wooden chopsticks (the kind you always save the extras from when you get sushi cause you know you'll need them someday...). we just cut them in half and they worked great...
Anonymous said…
A sugar thermometer was on my wish list, but now I'm not so sure. Sorry for laughing!
sara said…
Okay this *is* a cautionary tale, but a freakin' hilarious one at that.

Word verification: ylith. Which is how one might say "help" with a mouth glued together with candy apple & wax paper.
Anonymous said…

CLEAR candy apples?

Well no wonder they were weird!

Use aluminum foil that you've buttered next time....if you guys ever get your mouths apart again, that is....
KPB said…
mwahahaha. The clincher for me? the pic of the toffee in the pot and the comment "this is never coming off" because while making toffee apples sounds like such a good idea, the effort/result is questionable. Still, I bet they were sensational.

Poor pot.
Joke said…
Badge is right on the Silpat. (Buy to size, DO NOT CUT THEM TO FIT!)

Me? I would have made apple butter and cider.

Anonymous said…
First: off the bra is off as soon as we enter the house. Straps out the sleeves whole thing whisked off through th bottom of the shirt all Houdini like.

Second: Silpat, just do it. Spend the money on the French ones that have finished edges.

Third: Just boi water in the pan with the sugar, it will take everything off and clean the pan.

Forth: Sorry about the bottom of the pan....sad that.
blackbird said…
HATE THE BRA. Sadly, I cannot walk around town without one...

second - I HAVE A DAMN SILPAT, I was just being very creative. It is French and has finished edges and I would never cut it (as Joke was worried I would).

third - the sugar released itself from the pan after a boil, but the burnt splats of sugar near the top edge of the pan (and this is just the double boiler insert) will take years to brillo off.

fourth - I hated the pan. IT WAS REVERE WARE. ack.
Anonymous said…
I am SO not doing that. Ever.
Anonymous said…
oh. I was worried about the double-boiling thing. I never double-boil candy and I do believe the last time anything was double-boiled in our house, yes, the pot boiled dry and was ruined, just like yours.

Here I was hoping you figured out a way to add water to the pot w/o steam burns! Now that is what we need to know.
Anonymous said…
It's funny because it's true. I've seen many a piece of waxed paper sticking to something in my kitchen. I usually go with parchment paper because Martha Stewart told me so.
Thanks for the Silpat tips, everybody. I made a note on my candy blog ( How does Silpat work with chocolate, does anyone know?
Anonymous said…
My son asked me to volunteer to make candy apples for the wrestling teams bake sale. No problem - I'll tell his cousin Britt, his Auntie Mary, or Auntie Dodo to help me. All three busy!!!

So his culinary failure Mom is embarking on this candy apple making task for a bake sale that is 9 hours away!

Who would ever think it would be so hard to melt together corn syrup, cinnamon hearts, sugar, and whatever else..roll apples in it - would be sooo horrendous.

I haven't even started yet and I'm going crazy!!!
Anonymous said…
I am rolling here, literally, tears streaming down my face, laughing so hard it's hard to type, because this was my same story (except for the double boiler) just last week! I'm still trying to figure out how on earth to make these stupid things, but I did figure out that simply spraying Pam (or equivalent) on any glass baking dish is the easiest way I've found to make them so they don't stick (I don't own a silpat, but will soon I'm sure after all this!)

I had the same exact problem with the stuff sticking to my teeth!! Yes! Mouth glued shut! And the best part was...hubby had to try it for himself! Even as he stood there watching my reaction! I was shaking my head no-no-no! *lol*

My best effort so far has been to bring the candy mixture to hard crack stage (yes, it really does get there eventually, and it does do what the books describe with the threads breaking instead of bending), but I don't use water, I just boil the stuff. It makes wonderful suckers, just not great candy apple coating because it's too hard. I'm going to try soft or hard ball stage next. I'm determined this is going to work without cutting my gums, breaking my teeth, or gluing my mouth shut! LOL!!!
Anonymous said…
Oh no! Just read your post and now I'm freaking out. I'm halfway through making toffee apples and can't get a hard crack, just soft balls here! I'm starting to prepare myself for failure. Just hope my 3 year old can cope with the disappointment!