Caramel Corn

Is it bad that I’m not a big fan of caramel? Candy, sauce, coating… not very keen on it! I love looking it, all ooey gooey. I’m not averse to the flavour per say. But I find caramel too sickly sweet. I always think I want a caramel candy but 3 seconds into having it, I’d regret everything. I think caramel is one of those things that is good in very small doses.

And I think it pairs just perfectly with popcorn because popcorn is essentially tasteless. The large surface area sorta spreads the sweetness out a bit, making it much more enjoyable and less intense.
Caramel Corn 1

Popping my own popcorn is my only option as brown paper baggies don’t really exist here so the microwave method is out.
Caramel Corn 2

I love the popping sounds it make… but sometimes I like it too much that I burn a batch. Got to watch that heat!
Caramel Corn 4

I popped the corn in 4 batches to get about 10 cups total.
Caramel Corn 5

Now, this part gave me a little anxiety because I’ve never made real proper caramel before. Dulce de leche using condense milk, yes. Actual butter + sugar camel, no.
Caramel Corn 6

With a careful eye, it wasn’t difficult at all! 
Caramel Corn 7

I managed to get it to what I like to call, the big bubble stage, where the caramel is thick but not so much that it’s clumping yet thin enough to be pourable. Just… just never stick your finger in to taste. Unless you like burning your fingerprints off. Caramel is molten hot!
Caramel Corn 8

What I didn’t manage to capture after this was the pouring & mixing of the caramel into popcorn & subsequent some heating in the oven to crisp up.
Caramel Corn 9

I know some people like their popcorn utterly coated with caramel, with each piece totally wrapped in a crunchy shell. I’m not into that.
Caramel Corn 10

Moderation, to me, is key with caramel. Just enough caramel to kiss the popcorn & give it flavour. Plus, I think they look so much prettier this way with some golden bits & snowy white bits.
Caramel Corn 11

That oven time, I feel, is super crucial in humid weather. The caramel would sweat & the popcorn turn spongy. I like mine crunchy! 
Caramel Corn 12

Since all of the 10 cups of popcorn vanished, I like to think some people here like then this way too. 🙂 I’m super keen on trying other popcorn flavours. Do you have one to recommend?

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 “Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.” {Joshua 1:9}

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Caramel Corn
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Snack
Serves: 10-12
Ingredients
  • ½ cup (1 stick) Salted Butter
  • 1 cup Light Brown Sugar, packed
  • ¼ cup Light Corn Syrup (substitute with Honey)
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • ¼ tsp Baking Soda
  • ½ tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 14 cups popped Popcorn (about 1+ cup kernels before popped), preferably warm from being freshly popped
Steps
  1. Preheat oven to 150C or 300F. Line a rimmed baking sheet or large roasting pan with aluminum foil & grease with cooking spray or vegetable oil.
  2. Melt butter in a large stockpot pot over MED HIGH. Add brown sugar & corn syrup, stir to combine.
  3. Bring to a rolling boil, then reduce the heat to low & let simmer undisturbed for 5 minutes.
  4. Stir, then continue to cook for an additional 4 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds, until the mixture is a deep golden color.
  5. Turn off the heat and slowly whisk in salt, baking soda & vanilla, being very careful as the mixture will bubble.
  6. Stir in the popcorn with 2 spatulas & toss until it is evenly coated with the caramel, being sure to scrape the caramel off the bottom of the pot.
  7. Spread the mixture onto the prepared baking sheet or pan in an even layer. I had to do it in 2 batches.
  8. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring to toss every 5 minutes, until the caramel corn has turned a deep amber color.
  9. Remove the caramel corn from the oven and transfer to a surface covered with parchment or wax paper to cool.
  10. Once it reaches room temperature, use your hands or a spoon to break up the caramel corn, then immediately store in an airtight container for up to a week.

 Recipe lightly adapted from: Gimme Some Oven

Comments

  1. How fun it is to make popcorn at home! I don’t like caramel much either. It is too sweet for me. But I adore caramel corns. Love to get those in Hong Kong movie theaters! Sadly, they only sell butter popcorn in the US theaters.

    • Over here there are caramel popcorn but some are not very good! The expensive ones tend to be overtly coated. I know, terrible! LOL. But seriously, I want to enjoy all of my popcorn fresh but when it’s too sweet, I can’t have too many and the rest turns stale after being kept aside for a while. Homemade to customize!

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