Homemade Kettle Corn

My son is a sucker for this stuff. Okay, I’ll admit it.  So am I. It happens every time we are at the farmer’s market.  Or an outdoor festival.  The sweet aroma of freshly popped corn calls to me like a siren, and I am powerless to resist.  Only recently did I realize that it was so simple to make at home.  Since I don’t have an air popper, the below directions are for making the kettle corn on the stove top.  To gauge when the oil is hot enough, place a few kernels in the pot with the oil.  When they pop, add the rest of the kernels along with the sugar.

original recipe

Homemade Kettle Corn

Homemade Kettle Corn

Ingredients

3 Tbs vegetable oil
½ c popcorn kernels
⅓ c sugar
½ tsp salt

Instructions

  1. Heat oil in a pot until hot. Add popcorn and sugar and stir once. Cover but leave the lid slightly askew to allow steam to escape. Pop until most kernels have opened, shaking the pot occasionally. Pour popcorn into a large bowl. Sprinkle with salt, stirring with a wooden spoon to evenly distribute and to break up chunks of popcorn.
http://kokocooks.com/2013/07/homemade-kettle-corn/

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Three Cheese Popcorn

I recently wandered into the Spice and Tea Exchange, and got lost in all the enticing jars.  I felt like I was in an old time apothecary shop.

While there are endless combinations of spice blends, I was quite intrigued about making my own mixes.  Particularly as seasonings for popcorn.  There was a beer powder – beer and cheddar popcorn, anyone?  For my first concoction, I went with more mainstream flavors.  I especially liked that the cheese powders didn’t contain extra sodium, giving me more control over the saltiness.

original recipe

Three Cheese Popcorn

Three Cheese Popcorn

Ingredients

1 1/2 Tbs cheddar cheese powder
1 tsp Romano cheese powder
1 tsp bleu cheese powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder
8 c popcorn, popped (1/3 c unpopped)

Instructions

  1. Mix cheese powders, salt, pepper, and garlic powder together in a small bowl. Pop the popcorn kernels using desired method. Place hot popcorn in a large bowl. Sprinkle with half the seasoning mixture, and toss. Sprinkle the remaining seasoning mixture on the popcorn and toss again.
http://kokocooks.com/2013/05/three-cheese-popcorn/

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Animal Cracker Cookies


I remember eating animal crackers as a kid…I loved holding that adorable red box that looked like a circus car. I would take each cracker out and match it up with the picture of the animals on the box. They kept me occupied for many car trips.

I’ve always wanted to make my own version of animal crackers. Here’s a point of debate: Are they a cracker or are they a cookie? They are sweet like a cookie, but not too sweet. They are crispy like a cracker. How would you categorize them? This recipe produces cookies with a good crispy texture, but are a tad more buttery than the original. All in all, it’s a pretty good facsimile of an animal cracker.


from Williams Sonoma

Animal Cracker Cookies

Animal Cracker Cookies

Ingredients

2 ½ c all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
1 ½ sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, nutmeg and mace. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat the butter on medium speed for 2 minutes. Reduce the speed to low, and slowly add the sugar. Beat until fluffy, stopping the mixer to scrape down the sides. Add the egg and vanilla and beat for 1 minute.
  3. Stop the mixer and add half of the flour mixture. Beat on low speed until most of the flour has been absorbed. Add the remaining flour and beat until all of the flour has been absorbed and the dough starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl, 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a work surface and divide into 2 equal balls. Shape each into a disk and wrap separately in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 2 days.
  5. Let the dough stand at room temperature for 5 minutes. Place dough on a lightly floured surface. Roll out the dough to ¼ inch thickness. (If the dough cracks while rolling, let it stand at room temperature for 5 to 10 minutes more.) Lightly dust the top of the dough with flour.
  6. Preheat an oven to 350°F.
  7. Line several baking sheets with parchment paper. Dip cookie cutters into flour just before using and cut out shapes. Place cookie cutouts on prepared baking sheets. Gather up the scraps, re-roll and cut out more cookies.
  8. Bake the cookies until very light golden brown, 12 to 16 minutes, depending on their size. Transfer the baking sheets to wire racks and let the cookies cool to room temperature.
http://kokocooks.com/2012/01/animal-cracker-cookies/

 

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Chex Mix


This is the “Plex” mix I made for my son’s Yo Gabba Gabba party. Since chocolate and peanut butter is one of my favorite food pairings, I was all for it. I thought it would be a popular snack for the youngsters, but it was equally popular with the adults. We now have a gigantic bag of m&m’s that are missing all the yellow candies. Oh, what to do with them???

adapted from Chex.com

Chocolate Peanut Butter Chex Mix

Chocolate Peanut Butter Chex Mix

Ingredients

4 c Rice Chex cereal
2 c Wheat Chex cereal
1 c vanilla baking chips
½ c semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 c peanut butter chips
1 c chocolate candies (like M&Ms)
2 c mini marshmallows

Instructions

  1. Line two baking sheets with waxed paper. Spread both cereals in an even layer on both sheets (mix up the cereals on the baking sheets.)
  2. Melt vanilla baking chips over the stove in a double boiler or in the microwave in a microwave-safe bowl at 50% power, stirring every 30 seconds until smooth. Drizzle over the cereal.
  3. Repeat with the semi-sweet chips, and then with the peanut butter chips.
  4. Let the cereal cool and harden.
  5. Break the cereal into small pieces and place in a large bowl. Add the chocolate candies and mini-marshmallows, and toss. Store in an air-tight container.
http://kokocooks.com/2011/09/chocolate-peanut-butter-chex-mix/

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Peanut Butter Popcorn

For me, M&M’s come in 5 colors – orange, yellow, green, tan, and brown. None of this red and blue stuff. These are the M&M colors of my childhood. Yes, I know red used to be an original color. Call me a fuddy-duddy, but I miss the tan ones.


I thought I’d be able to find them at the M&M World at a nearby mall. They have a wall of candies in virtually every color. Except for tan, as I found out. The purpose of using tan ones was to fit into the fall color scheme I was going for. I had to settle for gold, which was a poor substitute. (picture from gosightsee.com)


Onto the popcorn…OMG, this is so easy to make, and so easy to eat! Hubs and I downed half a batch while watching the “Clash of the Titans” remake. If you’re a fairly regular reader, you’ll know I have a thing for peanut butter. This a must for any fan of the stuff.


Adapted from Hot off the Garlic Press

Peanut Butter Popcorn

Peanut Butter Popcorn

Ingredients

½ c popcorn kernels
½ c creamy peanut butter
½ Tbs butter
Couple handfuls of chocolate candies (like M&M’s®)

Instructions

  1. Pop the popcorn using your desired method (I do mine in a pot on the stove.) Pour popped corn into a large bowl.
  2. Place peanut butter and butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat until melted, about 30-45 seconds. Stir to combine. Drizzle the peanut butter mixture over the popcorn and toss well. Spread popcorn onto a sheet of wax paper and let set. Toss popcorn with chocolate candy and enjoy.
http://kokocooks.com/2010/10/peanut-butter-popcorn/

 

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