Showing posts with label candy apples. Show all posts
Showing posts with label candy apples. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Candy Apples for Grown-Ups + a SCREAM POLL and Giveaway for Halloween via Cleo Coyle


The Winner of the Comment-to-Win Scream Poll
Prize Package is announced below.
Scroll down to learn more.

There’s nothing like a really good scream.

A scream is a cleansing experience. It allows you to purge your pent-up tension and hurl your voice into the cosmos. True, it's not a very adult thing to do, but it is fun. And why should kids have all the fun? I mean, have you noticed how often they get to scream?

MY BEST SCREAMS...

Some of my best screams came from riding the old, wooden roller coasters at Kennywood, a beautiful, little amusement park in Western Pennsylvania, one that dates back over 100 years.

Several of its coasters are ranked among the top classic coasters in the country by the ACE, American Coaster EnthusiastsAnd my favorite of the bunch was even given landmark status.


Built in 1920, Kennywood's JACK RABBIT is one of the oldest still-running coasters in the world. Come with me now for a fantastically fun virtual ride...




Click the arrow in the window below to take
a short hop with me on the Jack Rabbit...



If you do not see a video window above, click here 
to watch on YouTube. Use your full screen for the best effect!


Did you scream? 

No? Then try a virtual ride on the Thunderbolt here, the Racer here, or even the steel Phantom (a more modern, nose-bleed-high coaster) here.  

True, these are only videos. But since this is Halloween Week, screaming is allowed. Of course, if coasters can't get you screaming, something else may. And that's what I'd like to know...


WHAT MAKES YOU SCREAM?

Take my SCREAMS poll below to tell me.

If you also leave a comment on this post,
letting me know at least 
one of your answers,
you are automatically 
entered to win my

Halloween "Treat" Prize Package 

(see more at the end of the post).

----------------------




----------------------------
If you do not see
the poll above,
click here to take it.


And now today’s Halloween treat!


Cleo Coyle has a partner in 
crime-writing—her husband.
Learn about their books
by clicking here or here.

Cleo Coyle's
Candy Apples
for Grown-Ups

While typically a children’s treat, candy apples make a nice novelty dessert for an adult party.
In fact, my readers may remember the "baby billionaire" candy apples served on a dessert tray of an exclusive club in Billionaire Blend.



Granted, one can act only so sophisticated when consuming a carnival treat, of course, that just might be the fun of it. (Camera phones ready?) On the other hand, you can always de-stick the apple, slice it in half, and serve it to the smart set as "glacéed pommes."

As for today's recipe, I experimented with a combination of ingredients until I was happy with the end product, which is why there is no corn syrup in this recipe. Instead, I used honey, which lends a lovely flavor. I’m also sharing a fun (spiked) version that’s even more grown-up. It swaps out the cinnamon sticks for cinnamon schnapps. (More on that below.) 

Whether you eat your apples with spirits or without, I wish you a very Happy Halloween! ~ ~ Cleo



http://www.coffeehousemystery.com/userfiles/file/Candy-Apples-Cleo-Coyle.pdf
To download this recipe
in a free PDF, click here.



To download this recipe in a PDF document you can print, save, or share, click here.












Makes about 6 medium (to large) or 8 smallish apples

You will need: * Wax paper or parchment paper; * Non-stick cooking spray; 
* Non-stick medium size saucepan;  * Wooden spoon or silicone spatula (one for high-heat cooking); * Wooden skewers or Popsicle/Craft Sticks or Chopsticks; * (Optional) A candy thermometer; it's optional because I often make these without a thermometer; so if you don’t have one, just follow my tips for knowing when the candy is done cooking.

Ingredients:

8 small or 6 medium (to large) apples (What type? See below...)**

2/3 cup water

1 tablespoon honey 

2 cinnamon sticks (or a few more, but do not use
   ground or powdered, it will cloud the mixture)


2-1/2 cups white, granulated sugar

1/4 teaspoon + 4 or 5 extra drops red food coloring

**TIPS on picking apples: I like to use small apples for this recipe and in my photos today you see organic Fuji apples. Be sure to choose apples without any wax coating (farmer's market or organic apples are a good bet for this). If you do have wax coating on your apples, you'll need to drop them briefly in boiling water (and dry the surfaces well). Otherwise, the candy may not properly adhere. For more suggestions on what types of apples are best to use for this recipe, read my tips in the PDF version of this recipe. Download it by clicking here.

Directions:

Step 1 - Prep the apples: Cover a baking sheet with wax or parchment paper and generously coat the paper with nonstick spray or you can brush it with oil. This is a must to prevent the apples from sticking to the paper. Remove stems from the apples and insert skewers, Popsicle sticks, or chopsticks as shown. 



Step 2 - Make the candy coating: Combine sugar, water, honey, cinnamon sticks, and food coloring in a nonstick saucepan. (The red food coloring will darken as the candy cooks, so don't go too heavy on it. I suggest 1/4 teaspoon and 4 or 5 extra drops, not much more than that.)



Stir the mixture over medium-high heat only until the sugar is completely melted. Once it’s melted, you’re safe to boil it. DO NOT STIR AGAIN AT THIS POINT. Turn the heat up and bring the mixture to a rolling boil. After about 10 minutes of a continual, rolling boil, the candy should be ready or very close. 




Testing candy for doneness (no candy thermometer?): To check without a thermometer, dip a spoon into the mixture and drop some of the liquid candy into a glass of ice cold water. Does it harden up quickly into a crunchy, brittle substance? If it does, you’re ready to make candy apples. If not, keep cooking but check frequently to prevent burning. 

Testing candy for doneness (with a candy thermometer): If you're using a candy thermometer, look for a temperature from 280 to 300 degrees F. Don’t go much beyond that or you’ll risk burning the candy. 

Candy-Making Temperatures Grid: For a handy grid of of temperatures attached to each stage of candy making, see the PDF version of this recipe. To download the document, click here.


Step 3 - Coat the apples: BE CAREFUL with this step because the candy-coating is very hot and will hurt like the dickens if it splashes on you. Turn the heat off under the pan and allow the boiling to stop. Tip the pan slightly and dip a skewered apple in the coating. Twirl the apple for an even coat. Lift and allow the excess to drip back into the pan. Place your newly dipped candy apple on the greased wax or parchment paper.





COATING TIP: Do not double-dip or be concerned with applying a super-thick coating. Take it from me, if the candy is too thick, your teeth will not be able to penetrate it. Simply dip once for a thin candy-coating. As it cools, it will harden prettily (similar to the hardness of peanut brittle).

As the candy in the pot cools, it will thicken and become more difficult to work with so don't let the candy sit around. Be sure to dip all of your apples relatively quickly after the candy is finished cooking. If the liquid candy does begin to thicken up on your, then turn the heat on again under the pan and warm the mixture until it loosens up.



CLEAN-UP TIP: Do not pour any leftover liquid candy into your sink. Instead, pour it into a disposable container (like an empty milk carton or soup can) and toss it into the garbage. As for cleaning any encrusted candy on your pan or utensils, simply fill your saucepan with water, place the utensils inside, and boil the water on the stove to melt the crusted candy off the sides and bottom of the pot. 



Cleo's
Cinnamon Schnapps 

Spiked Candy Apples

To make an even more grown-up version, you can spike the candy apples with cinnamon schnapps. Here's how I do it. Follow the recipe exactly as you would above with these changes.

1 - Leave out the cinnamon sticks and make the candy coating without them.

2 - After the candy is finished cooking and you are ready to coat the apples, turn off the heat under the pan. WAIT for the boiling to stop. Measure out 2 tablespoons of cinnamon schnapps** and CAREFULLY pour the schnapps into the liquid candy. The hot candy will JUMP and sizzle as you add the alcohol so please watch for that and do not get burned! The reason you are adding it at this late stage is to preserve the alcohol and flavor of the liqueur. Lightly stir the mixture with a wooden skewer and immediately begin dipping your apples. If the liquid candy cools and begins to thicken on you, turn on the heat and warm it until it loosens again, and...
Follow the rest of the recipe as written.

**Cinnamon schnapps is a fun liqueur to play with, especially in the fall and winter. Add a generous splash of it to a glass of cold apple cider, for instance, and you've got a drinkable "Apple Pie"--delicious! For more drink ideas using cinnamon schnapps, click here or here. (We use Goldschläger.)



Looking for More
Halloween Recipe Ideas?
We've got them! 



Visit our EAT, DRINK, AND BE SCARY page to see past recipes we've posted here at Mystery Lovers' Kitchen and check back because we'll have more recipes all week long!



Cleo's Halloween "Treat"
Prize Package

* A personally inscribed copy of Billionaire Blend

* A signed set of Cleo's glossy Coffeehouse recipe cards

* A package of Billionaire's Blend coffee, an amazingly delicious
premium coffee created by the One Good Woman company
to celebrate Cleo's Coffeehouse Mystery...


AND
* This custom-designed Coffeehouse Mystery
coffee mug with one of Madame's favorite sayings...



To enter the random drawing, simply take 
Cleo's fun Scream poll (above or here) and
leave a comment on THIS POST, telling me
at least one of your answers in the poll

This contest is now over.
The winner is

Valerie of
Omaha, Nebraska!

Congrats, Valerie,
and thanks to everyone who
left such fun, fantastic comments!


Marc and I had a scream
looking at what makes you scream!



~ Cleo Coyle

New York Times bestselling author of
The Coffeehouse Mysteries


Friend me on facebook here.
Follow me on twitter here
Learn about our books here.



To view the
Coffeehouse Mystery
book trailer, click here.
 


Billionaire Blend
A Coffeehouse Mystery

..is a culinary murder mystery that features
more than 30 delicious recipes, including
secret "off the menu" coffee drinks.
Read (and eat) with joy!



See the Billionaire Blend
Recipe Guide 
by clicking here.


***



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E-newsletter (recipes, contests, fun info).
Every week, a subscriber is chosen to win a
delicious package of premium coffee. 

Good luck!


*** 




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