It seems to be the season for caramel corn, caramel apples and all sorts of caramel things! YUM, caramel is my favorite! So far I haven’t ever tried making caramel corn in the oven, but just use this microwave recipe that I remember my mom making when we were kids (yes, microwaves existed then). It’s also a great recipe for people who only micro-cook!! 😉 Maybe it doesn’t taste or look exactly like the from-scratch oven caramel corn, where you cook the caramel with a candy thermometer and then bake it and all that, but if you want a quick sweet snack that is popcorny and caramely, then you should try out this quick recipe! 😉
It helps to have a hot air corn popper or know how to pop your corn some other way. I don’t recommend using the bags of microwave popcorn, but I suppose it would be ok if it wasn’t too salty…
Quick Microwave Caramel Corn (serves 1-4):
7-8 cups of popped corn
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup butter or margarine
2 Tbsp. golden corn syrup
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. vanilla
Combine sugar, butter, syrup and salt in a microwave-proof bowl. Cook on high for 1 and 1/2 minutes, stir. Cook for 2 more minutes, stirring after 1 minute. Add baking soda and vanilla and mix well and quickly pour over the popcorn, mixing well. You might want to divide it into 2 bowls at this point, if that makes it easier. Cook each bowl-full in the microwave for 2 minutes more, stirring after a minute.
Here are the steps in photos, Pop yer corn!
Then add most of the ingredients in a bowl, this is the dark (golden) corn syrup…Here we are all cozy together:Micro-cook!(Like the retro bowl?) Get the popcorn ready, about 7 or 8 cups of popped stuff…maybe you should have already measured this out….This is the bowl of bubbly ingredients coming out of the micro,Sprinkle on the baking sodaAnd splash in the vanilla and mix well, The mixture will foam up, it’s kinda fun!Stir quick and then get that stuff poured over the popcorn!! I wasn’t really fast enough because I had the camera in my hand…This is the sticky part….I was so busy trying to photograph this stuff, that I forgot the very last step, the cooking of the popcorn for 2 minutes more in the microwave. So I set up my little photoshoot with the caramel corn and it wasn’t quite done….so you’ll just have to believe me that it turns out more uniform in color and caramel than mine looks in the photo! I don’t think this recipe is the best for popcorn balls….but it might be ok for poppycock: adding in different nuts! yum! Enjoy a quick treat!
P.S. if you are wondering about the Golden Corn Syrup, I think it might be fine to substitute the light or clear corn syrup. But if you do buy a bottle of this stuff, you could also use it for caramel apples (I’m going to try that tomorrow) and for butter tarts for Christmas baking, oooooo baby!!