Those sticky and crunchy apples you find at a fall festival don't have to be an occasional treat. This recipe from pastry chef Ashton Warren at Restaurant Marc Forgione makes it easy to create the seasonal dish any time you're craving it.
* if you do not have a candy thermometer, Warren recommends using a bowl of ice water to test the candy. If the candy harden immediately when placed in the ice, it is ready to be used for coating.
Special thanks to Isabelle Boucher of Crumb for helping us test and develop this recipe.
Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with aluminum foil and spraying the foil with nonstick cooking spray.
Wash and dry the apples carefully. Remove the stems, and stick the skewers firmly in the stem ends.
Combine the water, corn syrup, and sugar in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves, then continue to cook, without stirring, until mixture reaches 250 degrees. Wash down the sides of the pan with a wet pastry brush occasionally to prevent crystallization.
Once the candy reaches 250 degrees, add the cinnamon candies and stir briefly to incorporate. Continue to cook, washing down the sides, until it reaches 285 degrees*.
Remove from the heat and stir the candy so that it is smooth and even. Hold an apple by the skewer and dip it in the candy, tilting the pan at an angle and rotating the apple to cover it completely with a smooth, even layer. Bring it out of the candy and twirl it to remove excess, then set it on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining apples.
Allow apples to cool at room temperature. Candy apples are best enjoyed within 24 hours.