So, tomorrow night’s the big night. Yup, the Oscars are back. Lots of controversy this year what with it being host-less and the on-air cutting and reinstatement of certain awards. Do you care? Will you watch? Are you having/going to an Oscar party? In all honesty, I have not seen even one of the nominated movies (yikes, we really don’t get out a lot) but I’m sure I’ll tune in for at least part of it, if only to see what everyone’s wearing! In any case, no matter how you feel about the whole Oscar watching experience, I know you are going to think that this Salted Caramel Popcorn is a winner. It’s a little bit sweet, a little bit salty—definitely worth of a statue!
Part of what I love about popcorn is that it’s a healthy snack. Of course that kind of goes away when you slather it in caramel. Why does that have to be reality?!! Fortunately, with this version though, the caramel coating is light—you can even kind of see that not every piece gets covered, so you get all of the fun sweetness without an excess of calories and fat. Now, I’m not suggesting that you indulge in this every day, but as far as movie-watching food goes, this is pretty tame.
It’s also a snap to make. Really, the whole thing takes about 10 minutes tops and the flavor is just worlds better than any popcorn mix you can buy ready made.
Whip up a batch and have fun watching! Boy, do I need to catch up on my movie watching. Thank god for Netflix!
Salted Caramel Popcorn
Makes enough for at least 8 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
About 1 cup popcorn kernels
Pinch or two of flaky sea salt, like Maldon
1. To make the caramel sauce: Place the sugar, butter, cream and vanilla in a medium saucepan and heat over medium heat, stirring well, until the butter melts and the mixture is bubbling and syrupy. Set aside for a few minutes to cool down.
2. To make the popcorn: Pour a small amount of the oil into a large, heavy-bottomed soup pot—just to coat. Add the popcorn. Cover the pot and turn the heat to high. When you hear the corn beginning to pop, give the pot a shake and continue to give it a shake every now and then until the popping subsides. Immediately remove from the heat and pour into a large bowl. Pour in a bout 1/4 of the caramel sauce and toss. Repeat 3 more times so that a lot of the popcorn is coated with the caramel but there will be pieces that don’t get entirely coated or coated at all. Sprinkle on the salt and serve immediately.
Note: Recipe adapted from Pull Up A Chair by Tiffani Thiessen. I more than doubled the amount of popcorn, so the caramel is less everywhere if you know what I mean.