Thursday, January 20, 2011

Homemade Caramel Corn

I absolutely LOVE Crunch 'n' Munch....but have you noticed how little caramel corn is in that box?? We don't buy it THAT often, but I do feel like money is wasted when we do buy it...I was so annoyed one time that I decided it was time to try and make our own... Most of the recipes I found used corn syrup, and I didn't have any on I used this recipe using molasses! It's delicious!! I will never buy Crunch 'n' Munch again!

Caramel Corn w/ Peanuts

2 bags of white popcorn (light butter but preferably NO BUTTER)
1/2 cup roasted peanuts (I add a little more...)
3/4 cup brown sugar (I use dark...)
1/8 cup white sugar
3/8 cup molasses (I cut the original recipe in half...)
1/2 stick of butter
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. baking soda

-Pop both bags of popcorn.
-Once they've cooled, scoop popcorn out by hand and put into a large bowl. (This is to avoid putting unpopped kernels in with the popcorn...) Sidenote: It wouldn't be a bad idea to spray a light coat of cooking spray in the bowl before putting in the popcorn. This is where you will be mixing in the caramel.
-Sprinkle the peanuts on top of the popcorn. If you mix the peanuts into the popcorn, they will all fall to the bottom and will not collect any caramel!

-Put brown sugar, white sugar, molasses, butter, and salt into a medium saucepan.
-Use med/high heat and slowly stir mixture as it melts.
-Bring to a boil and boil five minutes.
-Remove pan from heat.
-Stir in vanilla...
-...and baking soda. This is my FAVORITE part! It's so cool to see the caramel change and fizz up!
-Immediately pour caramel over popcorn and peanuts. Work quickly or the caramel will start to harden making it difficult to mix with the popcorn.
-Turn out into a large baking sheet (lightly greased) and bake at 250 for one hour.
-You are supposed to stir the popcorn occasionally while it's baking...I forgot with this batch, and it turned out perfectly fine!
And voila! The best caramel corn you will EVER eat. Try not to eat it all at once...

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