Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Purple Zebra Baby Shower and fancy caramel apples

I just helped to host a baby shower for a friend of mine. I had a hard time coming up with a good shower theme. So I decided to go with the nursery theme. It tends to make it unique to each shower guest of honor.  Her nursery colors were purple and zebra. Which I think are adorable together. The problem I had was making sure it stayed looking like a BABY shower and not a bachelorette party. 

I was able to pull it off using light pink as an accent color. This shower was done on a very tight budget, but I don't think you would be able to tell. I used fabric 12x12 inch squares on the center of the tables, then spread a mound of shredded metallic gift bag filler in the middle of that. Then I put gift tissue wrapped toilet paper rolls in the center of that, and sprinkled the table with purple star confetti and pink heart confetti. 

The Lunch Buffet table had a purple table cloth and more zebra fabric as a table runner. I originally wanted to use gift wrap but could not find any zebra print gift wrap.  

We served Chicken salad croissant sandwiches,  Egg salad Croissant sandwiches, Garden tomatoes stuffed with chicken salad, Tortilla chips with mango and avocado salsa, Cream puffs drizzled with pink and purple Chocolate, green salad with cranberries and almonds, pink fluffy fruit salad. 

Pink Lemonade was served with  sprite added to give it a little fizz, and for color, some limes.

And last but certainly not least... Caramel apples! 
It is the season for a good caramel apple and these did not disappoint. First I made the caramel, the secret to getting the caramel to stick is to keep the washed and dried apples in the fridge until you dip them. They need to be super cold. 
After I dipped them in caramel and rolled the bottoms and sides in chopped nuts, I put them back in the fridge for a few minutes. Then I melted some extra dark chocolate chips in a ziplock baggie. I cut off the tip and drizzled on the apples and then put them back in the fridge again. It only take a couple of minutes in the fridge because they are cold to begin with. After the Dark chocolate I used white chocolate and pink and purple chocolates, You can get these from Wilton in the cake and candy making section of almost any store. They are candy wafer melts. Lastly I felt that they needed a bow so I tied one on each stick. I presented them on a tray if the guests wanted them during the shower but while we were playing games I bagged them in clear cellophane baggies from the dollar store, and gave them to the guests as they were leaving. Can I just tell you the smell of these are divine. I had to hold a tray of 20 of these things! Let me tell you they are heavy too. 

Here is the recipe for the caramel. It is seriously just as quick and easy to make this recipe as it is to UNWRAP all of those little caramels. 
1/2 cup butter cubed
2 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
dash of salt
1 can (14oz.) sweetened condensed milk
1 tsp. vanilla 
10-12 popsicle sticks
10-12 med. tart apples
1 cup salted chopped peanuts. 

Note: I used about 20 small gala apples 2 1/2 inches. They are sold in a bag every where right now. This recipe covered all of them. I also used Sea salt and added about a teaspoon because I really like the sea salt caramels that are popping up all over now as well. 

In a large heavy sauce pan, melt the butter, add brown sugar, corn syrup, and salt. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture come to a boil, about 10-12 minutes. Stir in sweetened condensed milk, cook and stir until a candy thermometer reads about 240 degrees, firm ball stage.  Remove from the heat stir in the vanilla.
Insert popsicle sticks into the apples. Dip each apple into hot caramel mixture, turn to coat. dip bottom of apples into the nuts, set on greased wax paper, to cool. 
Yield : 10-12 apples. 

1 comment:

Charlotte said...

Ooh those look delicious. I'm going to have to make some now! Everything looks very cute.