Versatile Popcorn Makes Tasty Treats
January 25th, 2017

Toffee and melted chocolate elevate popcorn to a new level of deliciousness.
Photos courtesy of
The Popcorn Board

English Toffee Popcorn Bars

  • 2 1/2 quarts popped popcorn
  • 1 cup peanuts
  • 1 cup flaked coconut, toasted

Toffee

  • 1 1/2 cups butter
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons light corn syrup

Chocolate Topping

  • 1 1/2 cups (9 ounces) chocolate pieces
  • 1 tablespoon shortening

Combine popcorn, peanuts and toasted coconut. Cover the bottom of a buttered 15½-by-101/2-by-1-inch jellyroll pan with half of the popcorn mixture. Keep filled pan and remaining popcorn mixture warm in a 200 F oven.

To make toffee, melt butter over low heat in a heavy 2-quart saucepan. Add sugar and blend well. Continue to cook over low heat, stirring constantly until mixture reaches a full boil. Add water and corn syrup; mix well.

Wash down the sides of the pan with a pastry brush dipped in water to remove any sugar granules. Cook and stir over low heat, until mixture reaches soft-crack stage on a candy thermometer (280 degrees).

Immediately pour mixture over warm popcorn in jellyroll pan, ensuring all popcorn is covered. Quickly spread and press remaining popcorn mixture into hot toffee. Set aside to cool.

To make chocolate topping, melt chocolate and shortening over low heat. Spread over popcorn mixture, making certain any loose pieces are held in place.

Cool, then cut into bars.

 

Crunchy Popcorn Trail Mix

  • 5 cups popped popcorn
  • 3 cups whole grain oat cereal
  • 1/3 cup raisins
  • 1/3 cup peanuts or other nuts
  • 1/3 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 6 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoon light corn syrup

Stir together popcorn, cereal, raisins and nuts in a large microwavable bowl; set aside.

Combine butter, brown sugar and corn syrup in a small saucepan. Heat until boiling. Cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pour over popcorn mixture, stirring to coat evenly. Microwave for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring and scraping bowl after each minute.

Spread onto greased cookie sheet; cool. Break into pieces and store in an airtight container.

 

Pop-a-rif-ic Popcorn Balls

  • 3 quarts popped popcorn, unsalted
  • 1 pound marshmallows
  • 1/4 cup butter

Place popped popcorn in a large bowl. In a large saucepan, cook marshmallows and butter over low heat until melted and smooth. Pour over popcorn, tossing gently to mix well. Cool for 5 minutes.

Butter hands well and form about 14 2½-inch balls.

To color the popcorn balls, add a few drops of food coloring to the smooth marshmallow mixture. Mix well, then pour over popcorn as instructed.

 

Sea Salt Caramel Popcorn

  • 2 quarts popped popcorn
  • 1 1/2 cups pecan halves
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt

Line a large rimmed baking pan with foil and spray lightly with cooking spray; set aside. Spray a large non-plastic bowl with cooking spray and place popcorn and nuts inside.

In a medium saucepan, combine granulated sugar, butter and corn syrup. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Clip on a candy thermometer and boil, stirring occasionally, until temperature reaches 290 F.

Remove candy thermometer and stir in vanilla. Pour mixture over popcorn and stir to coat well. Spread popcorn mixture in an even layer on prepared baking pan. Sprinkle with sea salt and cool completely before breaking into pieces to serve. Store in an airtight container.

 

Maple Bacon Popcorn Mix

  • 8 cups popped popcorn
  • 6 slices thick-cut bacon
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 2/3 cup pecan halves, coarsely chopped
  • 2/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon maple extract

Heat oven to 400 F. Line jellyroll pan with foil. Place wire rack in pan. Arrange bacon in single layer on rack. Bake 15 minutes until ends of bacon start to curl.

Reserve 2 tablespoons of the bacon drippings. Brush bacon with 2 tablespoons of maple syrup; bake 15 minutes more until browned. Cool, then coarsely chop bacon.

Combine popcorn, pecans and cranberries in a large bowl. Set aside.

Combine butter, pepper, extract, remaining syrup and reserved bacon drippings. Cook over low heat until butter melts. Drizzle over popcorn mixture and mix thoroughly.

Spread popcorn mixture in jellyroll pan. Bake for 5 minutes, then toss in bacon pieces. Serve warm.

 

Truffle Popcorn

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons white truffle oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup popcorn kernels
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 tablespoons shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

In a large heavy-bottomed pot with a lid, place olive oil and 1 tablespoon truffle oil. Add three popcorn kernels. Heat over medium-high heat until a kernel pops. Add remaining popcorn; cover.

Once corn begins to pop, shake pot constantly over heat. When popping slows, remove pot from heat and transfer popcorn to a large serving bowl.

Melt butter and mix in 2 teaspoons of truffle oil. Pour mixture over popcorn and toss. Sprinkle cheese, salt and pepper over popcorn and toss to distribute evenly. Serve immediately or store in an airtight container.

 

Cinnamon Sugar Kettle Corn

  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup popcorn kernels
  • 1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher or table salt

Mix granulated sugar and cinnamon together in a small bowl; set aside.

In a large pot with a lid, heat oil over medium-high heat until hot. Add popcorn kernels and cover. When kernels begin popping, carefully lift lid and sprinkle in confectioner’s sugar.

Replace lid. Continue cooking, shaking pot frequently, until popping begins to slow. Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar mixture. Replace lid and continue shaking pot until popping has almost stopped. Sprinkle with salt and serve immediately.

Recipes courtesy of The Popcorn Board