I always seem to do the same thing when Stephanie throws a party: I get caught up with not so fun things to do and end up watching from the sideline while everybody brings a lovely dish and a drink. After the last one, I told myself that I would participate no matter what the theme was. I kind of bit my tongue and waited anxiously for this month' s theme.
Usually when I throw myself challenges I always wish I had put my foot in my mouth. Yep, that’s how I ended up challenging the neighbor to push ups and hurt for 3 days afterwards, or got myself enrolled in a 5K (albeit for a good cause), and last but not least making 3 wedding cakes in our old tiny kitchen for the same day….Now you understand why I sit quietly for a while before jumping in. But revenons a nos moutons, let’s get back to our topic.
This month’s theme is all about the kids. Seems quite easy at first glance, but when you have been an adult for a while and you don’t have children it can seem quite intimidating. My first inclination was to cheat and sit this one out again, but then my inner child woke up.
I was always the kid with her nose burried in books. I even used to read in the darkness of my room, only using the light of the fading sun reflecting on the white closets; it actually is often bright like this in the South of France. I must be quite a romantic because I loved (still do) fairy tales. Enchanted forests, fantastic heroes, dark and dramatic castles. I would spend hours imaginaing dresses, attires, dialogues. My parents had these great books on tapes with all the famous fairy tales that they would play on road trips and I could recite them in my sleep.
Charles Perrault, the Grimm brothers, Stahl, Madame d’Aulnoy,…I loved these stories because as a gourmande, I was always fascinated by the opulent descriptions of the kings and queens tables and feasts. I would imagine each dish, create a smell and a taste that could only be found in the imaginary. It struck me as an adult how much food is a central theme of fairy tales, rich or poor, everybody used it, ate it, gathered around it. Penachio and his 200 bread rolls and 200 chocolate mugs, Alice in Wonderland and her Eat Me Cake, Hansel and Gretel and their gingerbread house, Little Red Riding Hood and her biscuits for grandma. It is no wonder that my childhood friends came back to pay me a visit and all wanted to get invited to this Blog Party #14!
Which one to pick? I wanted to bring them all to the party! Here in South Carolina, Summer is still lingering and Fall is barely making an appearance, yet beautiful red and gold apples were everywhere at the market. Hence, only Snow White made the cut and got an invitation. Her only requirement was to bring one of her delicious apples, except I got her the spot so no poisonous ones , thank you very much, but drenched and nested in beautiful caramel.
Snow White Caramel Apples (serves 4)
4 small apples, washed and toweled dry
500 gr. sugar
juice of half a lemon
125 gr. water (125 ml)
In a saucepan, combine sugar, lemon juice and water. Boil until a candy thermomether reads 155 Celsius (very light amber color). Pour over each apples. I set mine on a cookie rack over a sheet pan.
Reheat the caramel a bit and using 2 forks, dip them into the caramel and drizzled caramel strings over parchment paper. Gather around the apples and enjoy!
Note: I wanted more strings of caramel but I forgot that I was in the South and today was particularly humid, even in the house, so aramel work almost turned into caramel shmuck!
I got really nostalgic making these and craved my favorite kid drink, a hot chocolate with whipped cream and dusted with nutmeg.
Thanks Stephanie for the invite. Can’t wait to see what everybody brings!