Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Easy Caramel Corn

Doubling the recipe...
Before starting this recipe, it's pretty good to have an idea of what you're getting into.  About 3 bags of ORP/6 bags of generic bagged corn makes 7 quarts.  You can make it on the stove, but I was at work and don't have that kind of patience.  7 quarts of popcorn covers two large cookie sheets really well.  If you can't fit more than two cookie sheets in your oven, then don't double the caramel until you can use it.  My assistant learned this the hard way and I almost killed her for it.  Go low and slow and it'll help.  Promise.
So, without further ado, the recipe!  Now, when I found this recipe, I was quite Dawson leery.  It's called My Amish Friend's Caramel Corn, which is fine, but it seems to be pandering to an audience.  There's a story about it, and whatever, but why not just call it Amish Caramel Corn?  Why bring yourself into the equation like you're a gift to the Amish?!

I'm not bitter, just thought it was odd.

My assistant was so excited to learn how to make caramel this way that she called both parents and just about everyone she knew to gloat.  It was cute.  I didn't realize this was such a feat.

The recipe does a great job at walking you through the process.  It's simple (unless you're trying to take pictures at the same time.

After you make the caramel, you need to coat the popcorn that you've so nicely laid out on the cookie/roasting sheets.

Sounds easy enough, but I had a problem.  I didn't like the way the popcorn was coated.  I know that you will stir the popcorn no less than three times throughout the baking process, but the better coated you are going in, the easier the coating will be throughout the next hour.

For my second batch, I put the popcorn in a large metal bowl and tossed in the caramel that way.  It made it much quicker in the long run.

In my caramel corn research, I discovered that it's the low and slow cooking that helps to preserve the corn for longer periods of time.  By cooking it for an hour (sometimes more, depending on the recipe), you dry out the popcorn to make it more preservable.  One lady said she saves hers for months.  I'm not sure how because this caramel corn absolutely melts in your mouth.  It's so more-ish that is borderline addictive.  Real talk.  Definitely worth the hour, or so, of your time.  Cool completely, and store in an air tight container.
7 quarts of pure love!  Great holiday gift, too!!

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