Thursday, August 09, 2007

Baked Caramel Popcorn



This is the recipe that my mom used for us. It's crunchy, sweet, and yummy, and when I was very fat and pregnant with Annika, I ate half a batch by myself one night while waiting for John to come home from the late shift. I became sick that time (an entire stick of butter! what was I thinking?!!!), but that doesn't prevent me from making it now to share with my children....

We usually cut this in half.

10-12 cups popcorn
2 sticks butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla

After popping popcorn and placing it in a large bowl, bring butter, sugar, corn syrup, and salt to a boil, while stirring. Boil for about five minutes on the lowest heat at which the mixture will boil, without stirring.  Remove from heat and stir in baking soda and vanilla. Pour over popcorn, stir to coat evenly, and then spread out on a rimmed cookie sheet or jellyroll pan. Bake at 225 degrees for one hour, stirring every 15 minutes to break apart clumps.   When it's done, one note of caution: make sure you're not the only one awake in the house, or you may give yourself a bellyache.

*Also, if you like chewy, caramel popcorn, follow all the steps but don't bake it!  You can make caramel popcorn balls this way, too.

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