October 24, 2011

Fall Treats

Fall has arrived people and its time to break out the oven mitts!  This is one of my favorite times of the year that I don't mind baking tell my fingers fall off.  I enjoy bringing a smile to children and adults with the goodies I make.  With Halloween around the corner my sister and I thought it would be nice to get together to make candy apples and sugar cookies.  What I didn't know was that I would be baking an apple pie too.

So off I went in search of the perfect apples.  I always like using granny smith apples because of there tarty taste.  Macintosh apples are just as good, so I purchased both kinds in large and medium.  I like to have a variety of different apple sizes on hand.  This year I decided to try caramel wraps that are ready to just fold over the apples straight from the package.  But I still bought two bags of my trusty caramel squares just in case.  My sister picked up chocolate melts, candy sprinkles and nuts for the outside of the apples.

As you can see I ended up using my two bags of caramels, I just wasn't feeling those caramel wraps.  Just don't get me wrong they just did not cover the apples the way I like them to.  Just a little hint because in the past I had a problem with caramel sauce being to runny.  I decided not to add water to the mix this year.  I just melted them in the microwave for 2 mins.  But do note you will need more bags of caramel if you are doing more then 5 apples.  The sauce becomes thicker and sticks to the apples really good without adding the water.  Make sure to use parchment paper with non-stick spray to place your apples on.  My sister had to laugh at me because the apples were sticking to parchment paper because I forgot the spray. I also suggest buying the round wooden sticks for the apples.  They go in much easier then the flat ones. 

The next thing on our to due list was sugar cookies.  My sister is going to hate me for telling you this but I used the bag mix.  Hey don't judge its easier then having to mix all kinds of ingredients together.  I only do it when I am in a hurry aka (lazy).  They come out just as good plus I make up for it with the decorating I do.  For frosting I use royal icing that does wonders for cut out sugar cookies.  For color I use food coloring or cake gels.  I like to make sure that my icing is thick. Don't add to much water to the royal icing mix, which can be found at any cake supply shop.  As mention before I love my Standlee's on Third Avenue, in Chula Vista. 

Finally the apple pie we used 6 granny smith apples slice thinly without the skin.  For crust we bought refrigerated pie crust from the supermarket.  Like I said this was an extra, no time for homemade crust.  In a bowl I combined one cup of sugar, 1/2 tbsp. of Cinnamon, a table spoon of flour, and a pinch of salt.  You can add a dash of lemon juice so the apples don't get brown.  Mix all together and place in pie pan with crust already lined at the bottom.  Slice small pieces of butter before topping with other pie crust.  You can choice to put a whole crust on top with cuts or criss cross dough on top.  Place foil around edges so they don't get burned.  Remove foil before the final 15 mins of baking to get brown.  I also added melt butter at that point and sprinkled with extra cinnamon and sugar.  It takes about 30-40 mins to bake with the oven at 350.  It came out yummy.      
As I forgot to mention about the candy apples once the caramel has set a little bit, you can melt the chocolate to drizzle over or add nuts and sprinkles.  We used cupcake liners on the bottom to protect the bag from access caramel.  Which is the final product below.  As I say keep it sweet & simple for a great outcome.  I will be back at the end of the week with fall festival cupcakes & a teachers fall gift idea.


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