The leaves are starting to flame up into brilliant phoenix-like scarlets, pumpkins are getting plunked on doorsteps, and apples are in season; fall is officially here. Lately I’ve been taking full advantage of the autumn harvest and have been snacking on an apple (or two) a day. I’ve already plowed through the half peck I bought just two weeks ago. It’s been a great season for apples here in Maine and these toteable snacks are a tasty, convenient way to get dietary fiber into your diet. (Not to mention all these other awesome benefits of eating apples.)
Since I was a kid, one of my favorite fall treats has been apples dipped in caramel. My parents would come home from the grocery store mid-day on Sundays, shuttling back and forth from the car to the kitchen table as they unloaded the haul. I’d start unpacking the tall brown paper bags, surveying the goods. Perhaps once or twice a year, I’d reach into the crinkling bag, pull out T. Marzetti’s caramel dip, and squeal, already envisioning myself dunking apple slices in, submerging all but a tiny corner of the slice so I could pull it back out, dripping with gooey goodness. Many an episode of The Cosby Show was passed with sticky caramel fingers.
Now, though, I don’t even have to look at the ingredients list to know that all that sugary sauce spells a horror show for my body. What’s a caramel-apple-lovin’ gal to do?
Enter: homemade SCD caramel sauce.
What’s incredible about this caramel sauce is just how simple it is to make. It sounds like a complicated confection brought down from the gods on Olympus, an ambrosial sauce unfit for mere mortals. This dip tastes like heaven, but it’s as easy as pie.
Thanks to the instructive photos and step-by-step directions, this recipe was a huge success. Boiling honey can be a little tricky, as it can quickly reach the wrong temperature/stage and not set up properly or else become scorched. (For the most part, burnt honey is still usable, but the flavors are off.) Mad props to Mrs. Ed for putting this recipe on the web with helpful accompanying photos and easy-to-follow directions.
I used a milder wildflower honey and salted butter to make my batch. My butter wasn’t exactly “room temperature” (I pulled it out of the fridge about 10 minutes before starting), but everything still turned out perfectly. I stored my cooled dip in the fridge, and have read that most caramel sauce recipes keep for a few weeks.
My pro tip for making this recipe? Once you’re ready to serve it, sprinkle some sea salt on top. This added salty bite pushes this recipe over the top into gourmet territory. And who doesn’t want to brag about their homemade salted caramel sauce?