|Sugar||1 1⁄2 Pound|
|White vinegar||3⁄4 Tablespoon|
|Cream of tartar||1⁄2 Teaspoon|
|Red food color||1|
Combine water, sugar, vinegar, and cream of tartar in saucepan.
Heat over low heat, stirring to dissolve sugar completely.
Use small brush dipped in cold water to wash down sugar grains from the sides of the saucepan.
Undissolved sugar in the syrup or on sides of saucepan could cause mixture to 'candy' instead of remaining clear.
When sugar has dissolved, stop stirring. Bring mixture to the boil.
Boil steadily approximately 5 to 8 minutes.
This time will depend on degree of heat under saucepan and also on size and type of saucepan used.
A small saucepan will take longer, because there will be less quick evaporation of mixture; also a heavy based saucepan will take longer to cook the mixture than a thin based one.
Begin testing syrup by dropping small teaspoons of syrup into small bowl of cold water.
Use fresh water after each test.
First test; the mixture will probably be like syrup and will dissolve in the cold water.
A few minutes later the mixture will be thick and sticky.
Then the mixture will form a soft ball when rolled between the fingers in the testing water.
At this stage mixture will begin to bubble thickly.
Test again; mixture should form a hard ball when rolled between fingers.
Quickly add red food colouring to give a rich colour.
If obtainable, burgundy red food colouring gives best colour.
Don't stir; the boiling movement will evenly mix the colouring through toffee.
Test mixture as before; it should form thin threads of toffee in the water.
Test again a few minutes later. Listen carefully as toffee hits the water; it should give quite a loud, sharp crack.
Remove pan from heat immediately.
Stand saucepan about 10 to 15 minutes until all bubbling has completely stopped and toffee has cooled.
Have apples prepared: Wash apples well, pat dry; do not rub or polish.
Pierce each apple through centre with a butcher's wooden skewer, set aside.
Do not refrigerate.
All varieties of apples can be used, but the best results are obtained by using green Granny Smith apples.
The natural oils on the skin of some varieties of red apples can affect toffee coating.
The oils tend to prevent toffee clinging to apples, and as toffee drains away, bubbles form under toffee.
Tip pan on its side until there is a deep pool of toffee in the base.
Gently lower apples one at a time, at a slight angle, into toffee.
Slowly turn apples once round in toffee until completely coated.
Lift apple from toffee.
Do not hold apple upright, but keep at the angle.
Twist round once or twice, allowing excess toffee to run around apple.
Then stand apple upright on greased greaseproof paper to set.
If using red apples and bubbles begin to form during coating, plunge toffee coated apples in basin of cold water.
This sets toffee and arrests the forming of further bubbles.