This Halloween we might not be able to go out trick or treating as we might usually, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t still enjoy a treat or two. Why not have a go at making your own toffee apples?
8 apples (any are fine, but red ones work best)
400g caster sugar
1 tsp lemon juice
4tbsp golden syrup
You’ll also need 8 sticks, use either chopsticks or lolly sticks.
You can find Dorset apples all over the county, make sure to pick some up from a local farmer or at a farmshop. You can find out details of local farmshops here.
Start by removing the stalks from the apples and then put them in a heatproof bowl and pour over boiling water. Leave them for around 5 minutes to melt off any wax and remove them with a slotted spoon – be careful not to burn yourself! – and pat them dry.
Push the sharpest end of each stick into the stalk end of each apple making sure it is firmly in place, but not poking through the other side.
Cover your workspace with some baking parchment or similar – this does get messy!
Once your apples are ready, start making the toffee. Start off by putting the sugar into a large saucepan, add the lemon juice and 100ml of water. Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook until the sugar has dissolved, don’t stir it but you can swirl the pan to make sure it moves around.
Add the golden syrup and simmer – it is important not to let it boil.
Keep it on the heat until it reaches the ‘hard crack’ stage or 150 degrees on a sugar thermometer. If you don’t have a sugar thermometer, you can test whether it is the right temperature by dropping a small amount of the toffee into cold water, it will harden instantly and be brittle when taken out when it is ready. If it isn’t quite ready, continue to cook until it is the right temperature.
Take the toffee from the heat and quickly dip each apple into the toffee making sure to cover it fully by tipping the pan.
Allow excess toffee to drip off before placing on the pre prepared sheet.
If the toffee starts to get too hard before you’re finished, you can gently reheat it until it softens again.
Leave the apples to set and enjoy!