Today is the day to eat a good Toffee Apple. Not only is the humble toffee apple used in Halloween celebrations but in many others.
They are eaten in Brazil at the feast of St John The Apostle. In Canada, many fairs and festivals will see toffee (or candy) apples consumed.
In France, they are referred to as pommes d’amour (apples of love), whereas in Germany they are a Christmas treat. In Israel, they are almost exclusively eaten on Yom Ha’atzmaut eve which is Israel’s Independence Day.
In the Land Of The Rising Sun, Japan, they are enjoyed along with grapes strawberries and tangerines at festivals and the like. In Ireland and the British Isles, they are, of course, eaten on Halloween.
Here is a simple recipe for a good toffee apple.
8 Granny Smith apples
400g golden caster sugar
1 tsp vinegar
4 tbsp golden syrup
Put the apples in a large bowl, then cover with boiling water, do this in batches if needed. This will remove the waxy coating and help the caramel to stick. Dry thoroughly and twist off any stalks. Push a wooden skewer or lolly stick into the stalk end of each apple.
Lay out a sheet of baking paper and place the apples on this, near your stove. Tip the sugar into a pan along with 100ml water and set over a medium heat. Cook for 5 mins until the sugar dissolves, then stir in the vinegar and syrup. Test the toffee by pouring a little into a bowl of cold water. It should harden instantly and, when removed, be brittle and easy to break. If you can still squish the toffee, continue to boil it. Use a cooks thermometer if you have one and get the temperature to 150C.
Working quickly, dip and twist each apple in the hot toffee until covered, let any excess drip away, then place on the baking paper to harden. You may have to heat the toffee a little if the temperature drops as you dip and it starts to feel thick. Leave the toffee apples to cool before eating.