Thursday, October 23, 2008

gourmet apples and a shout out

I did something fun with the kids last night.  Monkey and I had been talking about this for a while and finally I got a round tuit.  Ok, I didn't really get a "round tuit" but you know what I'm talking about.
As some of you may know/remember, I used to sell Pampered Chef.  One of the theme shows we had a couple of years ago was making gourmet apples.  I have to say this was the most fun and most messy show I had ever done.   
So, last night we made gourmet candy apples.  This is more than just dipping an apple in melted caramel.  This is a production.  Oh sure, we did start with dipping an apple in caramel, but there were two kinds of cookies to crumble and two kinds of chocolate to melt.  This was no "simple" thing.
First things first.  We coated the apples in caramel and put them in the refrigerator for about an hour or so.  Wait, I missed something.  Monkey helped melt the caramel.  She had a very important job: stirring the caramel constantly.  But I couldn't leave Little Man out!  I put peanut butter fudge crackers in one ziplock bag and oreo cookies in another bag.  Little Man's job was to crush the cookies inside the bag with his fist.  He beat those cookies into submission, I tell you!  Actually, I had to help him a little.  His small fist could only do so much damage.  We set the bags aside for later.
Fast forward to after the apples sit for a while.  I melted two different kinds of chocolate - light and dark.  I had intended to use white chocolate, but the bag I bought I had used to make chocolate covered pretzels and when I tried to buy more, Wally World was out.
We coated the apples, first one half, then the other, with the different kinds of chocolate.  Monkey then took her apple and sprinkled cookie crumbs all around.  I did the apples for Little Man, Trey and me.  We let them sit for a while so the chocolate could harden, then cut them up for dessert.
Just so you know, if you try this yourself, use a tart apple like Granny Smith.  We used Red Delicious which made it too sweet.  Even Monkey said it was too sweet for her.  You read me right.  My daughter, who has a bigger sweet tooth than I (as if that was even possible) said her apple was too sweet and that she wanted to save the rest for another day.
Did you know that people will pay upwards of $20 for a gourmet apple like we made?  Crazy, isn't it?  Well, ours aren't pretty, but with a little time and effort, these could make great gifts and you can make several for less than $20 total.  
If you're interested in more detailed instruction, just leave a comment.  If you're like me and just want to wing it - go for it!  
On a different note, I want to give a shout out to my dear friends, Runner Girl and Mom of 4.  They are running in their first marathon this weekend:  The Marine marathon in DC.  They've been diligently training and supporting each other all summer long and I am so proud of them!  I've done a marathon - the first Rock N Roll marathon in San Diego, 1998 - and if I can do it, I know they can!  Prayers for them for safe travels to DC and a good run on Sunday.  I'll be with you in spirit, friends!


Wendi Kelly Life's Little Inspirations said...

As a one time marathon runner, I join the well wishes for your friends. Pass on the good cheer from me! It's a great experience.
I enjoyed reading about the apple-making. My daughter would love to do this. It sounds like fun and she would love the idea of making a few dollars on it. Thanks for the idea!

Kool Aid said...

It is a great experience, although I swore at the end I would never run again! One is a regular reader of my blog, so I'm sure she'll get your thoughts.

It's a fun project and if you get don't too tweaked about the mess it's great for the kids to do. Something you must have, that I forgot to mention, is parchment paper to put the apples on. That's a must.