Snacks

Party Popping {Caramel Popcorn}

And suddenly it’s December, and I’m having that same internal conversation where I ask myself where the year has gone?! Thankfully, the delicious foodie opportunities of the season make me feel better about time speeding past… it’s party time!!!

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For the past couple of summers I have been cranking out this absolutely addictive popcorn. It’s got a little spice to it that makes it special enough to be a grown-up treat, but even still I think that adults love caramel popcorn 😉 I’ve recently taken it to events like our church Barn Dance, Playcentre shared lunches, and the hubby’s work BBQs: at each one it was a winner, and I’ve been asked for this recipe every time I make it.

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I repeat: it is super addictive… you have been warned! Make a double batch and keep one at home.

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Caramel Popcorn

Adapted from dish magazine. Makes at least 8 cups worth.

  • 1/2 cup popcorn kernels
  • 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 150g butter
  • 3/4 cup caster sugar
  • 3 Tbsp golden syrup
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground or flaked sea salt
  1. Preheat oven to 120°C. Line a large oven tray with non-stick baking paper.
  2. To pop the corn: Heat the oil in a large (at least 3 quart), lidded saucepan on medium-high heat on the stove top. After five minutes of heating, add the popcorn kernels and swirl them in the oil to coat them. Place the lid on the pan, let it sit around a minute, then swirl the pan every five to ten seconds to ensure the kernels don’t stick to the base. When kernels begin to pop, swirl the pan constantly while holding the lid on, so the popped corn doesn’t burn on the base. When the popping stops (or the pan gets full!), take the pan off the heat and tip the popped corn into a large bowl sitting on a heat proof surface.
  3. To make the caramel: wipe out the popcorn pan, place the butter, golden syrup and sugar into it, and heat over a medium heat. Once the butter has melted, increase heat to medium-high and and stir occasionally. When the mixture comes to the boil, turn the heat down to low and let it bubble for three minutes. Meanwhile combine the spices and baking soda in a small container. When the caramel is ready, remove the pan from the heat and quickly add the spices and baking soda (the mixture will bubble up more).
  4. Pour the caramel into the popped corn and combine using a long-handled non-stick spatula – this might be easiest to do in two goes, being careful not to touch the hot caramel with your skin. Spread the coated corn onto the lined oven tray and bake for 25 minutes, then remove from the oven and turn the popcorn using the spatula, and bake for a further 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and leave to cool before breaking into chunks. Store in an airtight container (for as long as it lasts – which won’t be long!)

I hope this tasty treat goes on repeat in your party food repertoire, too! Here are a couple of pics from its appearance at our church Barn Dance last month, it was perfect for that theme plus makes a great summer snack.

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