Cozy Up to Fall with Homemade Treats and Decorations
By SARA KELLY
What better way to gather friends together and celebrate fall then to throw a caramel apple party? This recipe is quick, simple and sure to leave your guests enamored with the delight that is dipping things in chocolate and caramel. I more than believe that we are all kids at heart.
I am in awe of these apples. To me, they evoke effortless Americana. Before we get to the glorious candy-making part of this article, let’s go over a few steps for being a good host or hostess.
First of all: tidy up a bit. A cozy home is first and foremost a clean one, so mop that floor and whistle while you work. Or Spotify while you work, that is. It needn’t be a chore.
Next, decorate. A few simple and inexpensive autumn touches are all that you need to make your environment the image of east-coast domesticity. I made a simple wreath using artificial berry branches and some ribbon. These items, plus a wreath from the craft store, cost me less than $15 total, much cheaper than the store-bought version, which could run you $40 or more.
You’ll also want to gild a pumpkin. I bought three pumpkins in different sizes, arranged them nicely outside my front door and spray-painted one of them gold, waiting for the paint to dry between coats. How much simpler does it get? The result is a porch step straight out of Martha Stewart Living.
Now for the party. Before your guests arrive, set that table of yours. Arrange your supplies along a table runner, or a newspaper-laden table for a colloquial touch.
I put out bowls of Heath bar chips and cinnamon chips. The color scheme worked quite nicely with these toppings, but feel free to be creative here. Oreo crumbles or even gummy bears would be a cool idea.
Melt the caramel topping in the microwave for 30 seconds on a medium setting, stirring at 10 second intervals. Melt the chocolate the same way.
The rest is fairly self-explanatory. As guests begin to wander in, chat away while you make your caramel confections. Put a Popsicle stick into a mini-apple and dip it in the chocolate or caramel, being sure to knock off any excess by tapping it against the side of the bowl. Then, dip into the topping of your choice and place your apple directly into a cupcake holder as you wait for it to cool. At the end of the afternoon, guests can take home their treats on paper plates. Happy apple-making!
Sturdy Paper Plates
A bag of Wegman’s mini-apples, stems removed
One container store-bought caramel dip
One 16 ounce bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips
Any toppings you’d like!