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Let's see: Harry&David 10oz chocolate covered caramel popcorn, $7.95.


Home made: $1.49 for sugar, 1.69 for 1lb butter, 3.99 for 32oz popcorn kernels, 1.59 for marked down halloween chocolate...

=$8.76 for TEN 10oz bags of chocolate covered popcorn.

And I still have ingredients for at least another 10 bags.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Caramel:

1/2 c brown sugar
1/2 c corn syrup
1 stick butter

Melt in a saucepan and then bring to a low boil. Boil for 5 minutes, and then heat until caramel reaches 300F (hard crack stage). Remove from heat and add 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda.

Meanwhile pop a LOT of popcorn. Plain, no butter or salt.

Melt whatever chocolate you have. Last year it was chocolate easter bunnies, this year it was halloween candy and some baker's chocolate. Of course, you can use chocolate chips.

In a LARGE bowl put some of your popcorn and begin drizzling the caramel over it. Stir and toss, adding more caramel, until it is coated to taste. Spread the popcorn out on baking sheets -- I like to put baking parchment down first. Drizzle the hot chocolate over the popcorn to taste.

Keep doing this in batches. It makes a lot. You may have to re-warm the caramel and chocolate as you go. I use several baking sheets and put them out on the back deck in the cold to cool them quickly.
 

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Discussion Starter #4

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Savoury popcorn

I don't like sickly sweet anything and love plain buttered popcorn with a touch of salt and pepper.

Recipe:

butter
popping corn
salt and pepper to taste


I just melt the butter in a pan, put in around 1 tablespoon of popping corn, and heat until it's all popped. Add a dash of salt and pepper and it's done!
 

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I tried to pop corn for the first time in a regular pot the other day. I did it wrong because 1/4 of them didn't pop and the ones that did, got burned. Do I need to use a non-stick pan? I don't have a pan with a lid, only a pot (like a pasta pot) that is not non-stick. I sprayed the bottom of the pot with a spray olive oil and put the popping corn in, covered it and left it on high heat. What did I do wrong? Do I have to use butter? I am watching my weight and don't like to use a lot of that sort of thing, thus the spray. Help? :)
 

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You need to shake the pot. Keeping it moving constantly.

Medium heat should be adequate. It takes a bit before the popcorn is hot enough to start popping. If it doesn't start in a couple of minutes, turn the heat up slightly and repeat as necessary.

You can pop corn in a pot without using any oils, if you want.

I like pepper popcorn. Add about a half teaspoon of ground black pepper to the popper before popping, or to taste.
 

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I'm going to give that a try tonight - we're having movie night!! Thank you for the tips!
 

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This is the recipe we use for EASY microwave caramel corn- so cheap to make and delicious:


Ingredients

* 4 quarts popped popcorn
* 1 cup brown sugar
* 1/2 cup margarine
* 1/4 cup light corn syrup
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Directions

1. Place the popped popcorn into a large brown paper bag. Set aside.
2. In a 2 quart casserole dish, or other heat-proof glass dish, combine the brown sugar, margarine, corn syrup, salt and vanilla. Heat for 3 minutes in the microwave, then take out and stir until well blended. Return to the microwave, and cook for 1 1/2 minutes. Remove from microwave, and stir in the baking soda.
3. Pour syrup over the popcorn in the bag. Roll down the top once or twice to close the bag, and shake to coat the corn. Place bag into the microwave, and cook for 1 minute and 10 seconds. Remove, shake, flip the bag over, and return it to the microwave. Cook for another 1 minute and 10 seconds. Dump the popcorn out onto waxed paper, and let cool until coating is set. Store in an airtight container.
 

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For on the stove popcorn here is the recipe we use:

Ingredients

* 1/4 cup vegetable oil
* 3 tablespoons margarine
* 1/2 cup unpopped popcorn
* 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt, or to taste

Directions

1. In a 2 quart pot, combine the oil, margarine and popcorn. Set over high heat, and constantly shake the pan back and forth. After the first kernel of corn pops, place the lid on the pot, and continue shaking. When the popcorn starts to lift the lid up off the pan or the popping slows, remove it from the heat.
3. Pour into a paper bag and season. Shake the paper bag to distribute the salt.
 

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What do you store the popcorn in after it's made to ensure freshness? I made the caramel popcorn for a Halloween party last year and had so much left over and ended up just tossing it (I know a terrible waste).
 

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You could try storing it in an air tight container or zip sandwhich bags but it will only keep for so long regardless. I don't think you can freeze it but I could be wrong.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I have used large airtight containers and zip bags and it also keeps reasonably well in gift bags with twist ties but you have to get them really tight. You can refrigerate it.
 

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This is a recipe for easy popcorn from the Dr. Oz show.

¼ C popcorn
Pour in brown bag
Fold over top
Put the bag in microwave for 2 minutes or until popping stops
Pour into container

If you want different tastes:
Spray on some cooking spray (this makes the spices stick)
Add spices(cinnamon or garlic salt)
 

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I learned a trick.. just wanted to pass it along. to get minimal unpopped kernels... heat your oil over med-high heat. throw in 4 kernels and cover. When they pop, pour in the rest of your kernels and remove from the heat for 30 seconds. Then return to the heat and pop as usual. I am AMAZED at how few kernels are unpopped. I think I had 3 unpopped last time.
 
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