Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Stove Top Popcorn!

Stove top popcorn is special... maybe even the kind of special that childhood memories are made from. I recently popped popcorn on the stove and our whole family was amazed at how wonderful and fresh it tasted. What makes it so good?! Is it the hot oil, the corn kernels, the fun of watching the popping, or the satisfaction of doing something an old-fashioned way? I don't know exactly, but I do know that I never want microwaved popcorn again! 

This is a great activity and snack for kids. They can help measure and pour oil and kernels. They will love watching the corn pop, and you can even work in a teaching moment to talk about the history of popcorn and how our ancestors popped it. There is some great info here at popcorn.org. 

Stove Top Popcorn
1/3 cup popping corn 
2 Tablespoons oil (any cooking oil works... but not butter - it burns)

Herb Topping
3 Tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon truffle-flavored oil (optional - but a really nice addition if you have it)
3 cloves garlic, minced 
1 teaspoon dried dill 
Dash of salt 

Heat oil on the stove in a large pot (or even wok) over medium high heat. When the oil is hot, but not smoking, add the popping corn. Cover and allow the corn to pop.  It will only take a few minutes for popping to complete.  You know it's done the same way as in the microwave - when it's been about 5 seconds and no kernels have popped. If you are looking for a healthy, kid-friendly recipe, stop here!  WP loves his popcorn right out of the pot.  

For a special treat, add the Herb Topping.  While the popcorn pops, melt the butter in a small pan over medium heat. Add the truffle oil and garlic and cook 1-2 minutes. Stir in dill and salt to taste. Pour over popcorn and toss. 

I made popcorn with the herb topping, and my husband said this is the best popcorn he has ever had! It's really delicious - good enough even to be a side dish for a meal. 

In an unrelated note, I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! I was blessed this Christmas by both giving and receiving. Even writing this post, I am using Christmas presents from family who know me so well. I hope that you were able to give and receive joy too!

Love, Lauren

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