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Crack

So, I was listening to the “This Week In Food” podcast by Chef Tom and he made mention of a recipe for a very special snack… actually one of my all-time favorite snacks, so of course I had to find it and make it for myself.  It’s an incredibly delicious caramel popcorn (which the friend who had gifted these little morsels of goodness unto him affectionately referred to them as “crack.”)

The recipe comes from a food blogger called Orangette and the process is, in and of itself, very simple.  I’ll explain it below…

Ingredients

1 bag of salted, microwaveable “Natural Flavored” popcorn (no butter)
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup light corn syrup
6 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup lightly salted peanuts

Needed Utensils

Candy thermometer
Whisk
Rubber spatula
Half sheet pan
Parchment paper or silpad
Large  bowl
Non-stick cooking spray

Procedure

Begin by preheating your oven to 250F (120C).

On a half-sheet pan, place a silpad or line with parchment paper.

Spray a large bowl with non-stick spray.  Pop the popcorn and pour into the bowl, be sure to weed out as many kernels as you can.

In a 2 qt. saucier or medium saucepan, combine the butter, salt, brown sugar, syrup and 2 tbsp. of water. Whisk while bringing to simmer and cooking 3-4 minutes until the mixture reaches 250F (120C).

Remove from heat and whisk in baking soda (it will foam up!) and vanilla (it will sizzle in the hot mixture!).

Quickly pour into the bowl of popcorn and use the rubber spatula to mix, coating popcorn evenly.  Add peanuts and mix briefly to combine.

Turn out onto your sheet pan and spread out evenly.  Be sure to leave room for your potholder/towel to pull it out.

Bake at 250F (120C) for 60 minutes, turning the popcorn with the rubber spatula every 20 minutes.

Cool for 20 minutes.

Get your fix.

Yum.

The result is a salty, sweet, crunchy whole grain confection that will satisfy and leave you wanting for more all at the same time.  Thank you, Orangette and Chef Tom!!!

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