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Easy Homemade Caramel Corn
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Summer Fest Ingredient: Corn
I know what you’re thinking. You have a beautiful bounty of fresh summer corn to saute, grill, puree and bake (i.e.: the whole point of Summer Fest) and you did what with this week’s ingredient?
Yep. I popped it. No husking, no picking through for a good cob, no fidgeting with silken strings to avoid accidental flossing. I plain ol’ ripped open a bag and started popping. But I swear this was only out of necessity …
My mom and grandmother declare every imaginable holiday as an excuse to send me my favorite treat – a tri-colored assortment from my best buddies over at The Popcorn Factory. And since I polished off the 4th of July tin weeks ago, and Labor Day’s shipment is way too far away, this kernel-crazed aficionado has resorted to making her own. Serve this quick-fix crunchy treat in bowls or go the extra accessible step and make parchment paper cones for finger-friendly snacking.
Fellow Summer Fest 2010 Bloggers:
- Devour (The Cooking Channel)
- Healthy Eats (Food Network)
- The FN Dish (Food Network)
- A Way to Garden
- The Wright Recipes
- White on Rice Couple
- Food Philosophy
- Alice Q. Foodie
- Pinch My Salt
- Gluten Free Girl
- Tea and Cookies
- Eating from the Ground Up
- Tigress in a Jam
- The Sister Project
- San Diego Foodstuff
- Remarkable Palate
Easy Homemade Caramel Corn
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 3/4 cup unpopped popcorn
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 2 cups light brown sugar
- 1/2 cup corn syrup
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup pecans (optional)
Preheat oven to 250ºF.
Place a large stock pot over medium heat and add the vegetable oil.
Add the popcorn to the pot and cover it. Once you hear the first kernel pop, remove the pot from the heat for one minute. Return the covered pot to the heat, shaking it over the flame until all of the kernels have popped. Reserve the popcorn.
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the brown sugar, corn syrup and salt. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. Then allow the mixture to boil, undisturbed, for 4 minutes. Remove the caramel from the heat and stir in the baking soda and vanilla extract.
Immediately pour the caramel over the popcorn, stirring to coat each kernel.
Transfer the coated popcorn into two 9x13" shallow baking pans.
Bake the popcorn for one hour, stirring every 15 minutes.
Remove the caramel corn from the oven and spread it onto parchment paper to cool completely before breaking it into pieces.
Recipe adapted from AllRecipes.com.
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