First, gather up and measure out all of the ingredients. Remove the stems from the apples and skewer the core of each one with a short bamboo skewer and then set them aside on a sheet of parchment paper.
Next, combine the water, sugar, light corn syrup, and black food coloring in a saucepan- I like to use one with a pouring lip- and bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat. Continuously stir the mixture with a silicone spatula or whisk until the sugar completely dissolves, about 20 minutes.While cooking, occasionally scrape down the mixture along the inside of the pot, so that no leftover sugar crystals mess with the final consistency.
The colored caramel is ready when it reaches 310ºF on a candy thermometer or reaches the “hard crack stage”.To see if the caramel is ready without a candy thermometer, just drop a little bit of the boiling sugar mixture into a glass of ice-cold water. The sugar drop should form hard, brittle threads that indicate that it has reached the right temp.
Finally, carefully dip each apple into the black caramel one at a time. Swirl the pan around from one side to the other to thoroughly coat each apple with the candy mixture, and then carefully transfer the candied apple to a sheet of parchment paper to cool and harden completely.Before serving, cover each of the bamboo skewers with a Halloween-themed paper straw.Candied apples are usually ready to eat in about 10 minutes.
Storing Candied Apples:To properly store candied apples: wrap the candied apple in cellophane wrap and tie it off well to prevent any air from reaching the apples. The apples will stay fresh like this, at room temperature for up to 3-5 days, out of the sun. Candied apples can be kept in the fridge, stored in an airtight container for up to 1 week, but the moisture from the fridge can make the candy coating start to sweat. So for the crispest results, I recommend the room temperature storage method.