We have a bit of a popcorn habit in this house. At least a few evenings a week, the sound of pop-pop-popping can be heard coming from the kitchen. Usually it's because Mr. Feedbag is feeling a bit snackish, and popcorn is near the top of his snack list. Oddly, I didn't even particularly like popcorn before I met Mr. Feedbag. I would usually go for something sweet and chocolatey over popcorn at the movie theatre. But something about him changed something in me over the years, and now sitting in a dark theatre with a bag of hot, buttery popcorn and a cold drink is one of my favourite ways to relax.
Somewhere in the 1980s it seems home cooks forgot how simple it is to make popcorn on the stove. Between the microwave craze and plug-in countertop poppers, the old-fashioned method using a simple pot with a lid fell out of fashion. But like a lot of things in the kitchen, I think the old way is often the simplest and most delicious way. The best popcorn tastes like a fresh breeze running through a corn field on a sunny day, and that's what you get from popping it on the stove.
Get the recipe below...
Serves 3-4 snackers
1/4 cup (60 mL) cooking oil (such as canola, sunflower, safflower or even olive oil)
2/3 cup (150 mL) popcorn kernels
salt to taste (optional)
Pour the oil into a medium saucepan with a lid. Add 1 popcorn kernel to the oil. Cover with the lid and set it over medium high heat until the kernel pops (you will hear it). Remove the lid and pour in the rest of the kernels to cover the bottom of the pan in a single layer. Cover again and allow the remaining kernels to pop, giving the pan a gentle shake a few times while popping (it will only take a couple minutes). When the popping slows to one or two pops every few seconds, remove the pan from the heat and transfer the popcorn immediately to a large bowl. Sprinkle with salt if desired.
Does the sound of pop-pop-popping come from your kitchen a lot too? How do you season your popcorn, or do you like it plain jane like I do?