Mike pointed something out to me the other day – something fairly obvious but, you know, nothing I had really given much thought before. Popcorn is just a whole grain popped to deliciousness. Ha! In search for less refined and processed products, and maybe especially in the snacks department, popcorn is… a whole food. Pure and simple. It’s brilliant! It’s also one of our favorite snacks in front of a movie. And now, finally, we have them here in a Christmas edition (which might not qualify for a particularly healthy snack, but what can you do?). I love caramel flavor. Always has, always will. Salted caramel ice cream is my go-to during the warmer half of the year, and as I kid, I’d go for caramel sauce over chocolate sauce any day. Yes, it can be overly sweet. But boy, it’s good. And one of the good things about making your own caramel-flavored food items is that you can sweeten it to your liking. You get all the same flavors but just a little less of that tongue-rolling sweetness shock.
Mike made us caramel popcorn a while back and it was. so. good. Since then, we’ve been experimenting with spicy popcorn, chocolate popcorn, “cheesy” popcorn (using nutritional yeast) etc. It’s fun! With that in mind, a Christmas version was a given to try out. If you follow us on instagram and watch stories every now and then, you might have caught a glimpse of our holiday season guilty pleasure – watching bad Christmas movies. Before you judge us too harshly, let me explain. When we lived in New York and worked long hours and were stressed beyond belief, we started a tradition of relaxing in front of cheesy Christmas movies all the way leading up to the holiday break. No pressure to pick an intellectual movie made by that famous director or about that extraordinary person – just silly laughing and an injection of jingle bells and snowy landscapes. Needless to say, we’ve kept the tradition alive for a few years now, even though we’re not super stressed anymore. It doesn’t matter. What does matter is that we like it, and that saffron popcorn takes home first prize for best evening snack in front of a (bad) Christmas movie.
För recept på svenska, klicka här: Saffranskolapopcorn
1 dl popcorn kernels
1 tbsp grape seed, canola, or coconut oil
50 g butter (4 tbsp)
135 g sugar (approx. 1 1/2 dl)
1 tbsp + 1 tsp golden syrup (we use Swedish ljus sirap)
1/2 g ground saffron
1/4 tsp baking soda
- Set oven to 175ºC.
- Place a large pot over medium heat and add in the oil and 2-3 popcorn kernels. Cover and wait till you hear the kernels pop.
- Remove the pot from the heat and pour in the rest of the popcorn kernels. Wait 10 seconds and then put the pot back on over medium heat, and cover. Leave the cover ajar to let the steam escape as the popcorn pops, which will give you a crisper finished product.
- As the popcorn starts popping, give the pot a gentle shake back and forth every 15 seconds or so, mixing everything up in there. When the popping slows to about 3 seconds apart, remove the pot from the heat. Pour out the popcorn into a large bowl, making sure to remove any unpopped kernels.
- In a small saucepan, combine the butter, sugar, syrup and saffron, and place over medium heat. Once the sugar dissolves and the mixture starts to bubble, remove from the heat and whisk in the baking soda. Pour the caramel over the popcorn and mix gently until well-coated.
- Spread the coated popcorn onto a large baking sheet with parchment paper and bake for approximately 10-15 minutes. You want the caramel to darken but not burn. Give everything a stir about halfway through.
- Let cool and break up any clusters before eating. Store in an airtight container for up to a week.