This classic fair staple is fun to make at home, especially for a Halloween treat. Note that Rome apples will make the prettiest candy apples, and you’ll want to store the finished candy apples in a cool, dry place. You don’t want to store these in a refrigerator because the candy coating will become soft.
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Excerpted from Fair Foods: The Most Popular and Offbeat Recipes from America’s State & County Fairs by George Geary. Copyright ©2017 by George Geary. Published by Santa Monica Press LLC. Photo by Kylie Tefft
- 6-8 medium apples washed, with stems removed (Rome apples make the best-looking candy apples)
- 3 cups granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup light corn syrup
- 1 cup cold water
- 3 drops red paste food coloring
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- Press a stick into each apple and set aside.
- In a large saucepan, combine sugar, corn syrup, water and food coloring. If any sugar granules end up on the inside of the pan, use a wet pastry brush to clean them down. Set the mixture over medium to high heat and bring to a boil. Insert a candy thermometer into the liquid to allow it to boil, without stirring, until it reaches 302°F (hard crack stage), about 20 minutes. Remove from heat.
- Add vanilla and stir only slightly to blend. Working with 1 at a time, dip the apples into the mixture, tilting the pan to coat them evenly. Let the excess dip off into the pan, then set the coated apples on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Allow to dry for 30 minutes before eating.
Store covered in a cool, dry place. Do not refrigerate, or the candy coating will become soft.
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