Part of the hesitation in making caramel
corn is the sticky, gooey mess that remains
once you've finished making it. You almost
need a blow torch to remove the hardened
sugary stuff from your pans.
Help is on the way! This recipe can be made
in your microwave, and when you're finished,
you can just throw the paper sack away.
This doesn't mean that it doesn't take a little
preparation time, but at least you can relax
and enjoy the finished product without having
to worry about a lot of cleanup.
Next time you go to the grocery store, ask for
your groceries in paper bags. You'll need one
bag per batch.
Here's what you'll need:
3-4 quarts popped corn
1 stick of butter (no substitutes!)
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup Karo Syrup
1 tsp baking soda - add last
Pop the corn and discard the unpopped kernels.
Put the popped corn in the paper sack. While the corn
is popping, put the butter, sugar, salt and syrup
in a glass bowl and bring it to a boil in your
microwave. Stir after one minute, and let it
boil for an additional minute. Add one tsp of
baking soda and stir well, until thickened.
It will turn light in color and look like taffy.
Pour this mixture over the popped corn in the
paper bag and shake well. Put the paper bag
back in the microwave and cook an additional 1-1/2
minutes (90 seconds). Remove and shake well again.
Return to the microwave and cook another 1-1/2
minutes. Shake again. Open the bag and let it
cool. You can even tear the bag down the side
and speed up the process.
Plan to make more than one batch because you'll
want to eat the first one! Great for Christmas
or birthday gifts. I gave this as a Christmas gift
to my co-workers one year and the next year they started
hinting for it again in September.
Once completely cooled, break up the chunks, put it
in a plastic holiday bag and tie with a festive ribbon.
If you eat a lot of ice cream the containers with lids
make a great receptacle for packing the caramel corn.
Save your ice cream containers throughout the year,
wash them out, line with plastic wrap and stick a bow
on the top. Include the recipe and directions unless
you want to tell them it's an old family secret, but
let me warn you that if you don't share the recipe,
they will come back next year begging for more.
Copyright 2002 Joyce Moseley Pierce
Joyce is a freelance writer and owner of Emerson Publications.
She is the creator of "All They'll Need to Know," a workbook
to help families record personal and financial information.
She is also the editor of The Family First Newsletter, an
ezine for families with young children. To subscribe:
Submitted by: Joyce Moseley Pierce *
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