Aprons. Let me start at the beginning. Last week I posted about my recent trip to my favorite spice store, Penzeys. I went there looking for fleur de sel (those beautiful flakes you see on top of oh, chocolate covered caramels.) I’m ahead of myself again. Catherine (my sister) taught me how to make these delicious candied apples:
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These Granny Smith apples are first dipped in caramel, then milk chocolate, then white chocolate and finished with a dusting of crushed Butterfingers. I love them. I love to give them as hostess gifts, or sometimes no occasion at all. Each time I have made them, I have tried a different caramel. Caramel, as it turns out, is tricky. Get it too hot and it hardens to rock that will break your teeth. Don’t get it warm enough and it won’t coat the apple nicely. After all my failed attempts at the perfect caramel consistency, I broke down and made my own caramel, the way Catherine does. One of my complaints with making my own? You have to make enough to dip the apple in, and that usually means you have a bunch left over. Which I always see Catherine dump out. I hate wasting stuff. I recycle. I reuse. I find a use for it if I can.
And I just made caramel. I mean, I just made candy. In all my life, I have never aspired to make candy. I never thought I would make it. And here I was, staring at my pot of leftover caramel when I realized I should pour it into a sheet pan and let it cool (did I mention I bought a thermometer for this great event??) After it had cooled, it was the perfect consistency. I cut it into little caramel shaped squares. My mind was blown. I had just. made. candy. Real, live (okay, so I’m pretty sure that after boiling it for 20 minutes there was nothing live about it) caramels. Like you buy at the store! What do I love and can’t get enough of? Sea Salt Chocolate Covered Caramels. It just so happened that I was planning to melt chocolate for the apples. Why not use the leftovers and dip my caramels in it? Back to the story: fluer de sel. Cannot. Find it. Anywhere. Turns out the Kosher flaked salt worked, it just wasn’t as fancy.
Now what about those aprons? As I spent twenty minutes constantly stirring the caramel, it occurred to me that I could really use a cute apron. An apron that was so cute, so flattering, so charming, so whimsical, that everyone I know would cry with envy. So I was kidding about the crying part…..really, I was. I haven’t had the time yet, but I am going to make myself one that while it won’t make you cry, it might make you rethink your current apron (or make you want to go out and get one, if you don’t have one already.) There are lots of aprons out there – Anthropologie (this shouldn’t be a surprise) has some absolutely fabulous ones that I approve of fully, and Target and random places-I-can’t-remember all have them. Wanting a one of a kind apron, I found this blog which offers patterns for free:
Yes, I know they might be knockoffs of Anthro’s, but I love the idea of making my own, choosing my own prints. I can’t wait to make one for myself!