February 22, 2010

Popcorn honey balls

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These were so easy to make! I can't believe I've never tried this before. Of course, Picky has only been daring to eat any form of popcorn for 3-4 months now, but still. I got the recipe from a book that I believe is now out of print called "The Good Goodies" by Stan and Floss Dworkin. I managed to pick up an old copy through e-bay after I saw the title mentioned in another cookbook (I think Laurel's Kitchen, or Laurel's Bread Book). They have some good recipes, although they also have some outdated ideas about nutrition. One is that honey is better for you than sugar (it isn't), and so they have tons of candies made with honey in there. The other is that carob is better than chocolate (I'm not sure about this one, but I have my doubts...plus I don't like carob...). Anyway, they do have a lot of treats and snacks with very wholesome, simple ingredients. Like this one. It only has 3 ingredients: oil, popcorn, and honey. You gotta love the simplicity. If you have an air-popper, you can probably skip the oil part. I don't, I have this great old-style popcorn maker pan from Back to Basics - although you can cook popcorn in any large pot, of course.

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Popcorn Balls

  • 1 to 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup popping corn
  • 1/2 cup honey

Oil the bottom of the pot with a thin layer of oil (I use canola). Pour in the popping corn and shake the pot to oil the kernels. Cover pot tightly.

Turn the heat to high and begin to shake the pot. Keep shaking while the corn is heating and for the first few seconds of popping. As the popping sounds come closer together, stop shaking. Leave the heat on until it stops popping.

Pour the popcorn into a big bowl.

Put the honey into a small saucepan, bring to a boil over low heat, and simmer for 10 minutes.

Pour the honey over the popcorn, and, with a pair of forks, begin to toss the corn gently, to get as much of it covered with honey as you can.

Here the directions say to wait until just cool enough to handle before pressing large handfuls together into balls - but I tried to do this before the honey was cool enough to stick and it was a frustrating experience. Just know that if the popcorn won't stick together, you should wait a few minutes until it cools a little more and try again. You probably don't need to try to spray your hands with canola oil, like I did...

Wrap each ball in waxed paper. They will keep for a week or so. The amount this makes depends on what size the balls are - I made 16 medium-sized balls.

You can also try adding peanuts: 1 cup of shelled peanuts with skins, added before the honey. I haven't tried this yet, but I'm tempted...

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Picky insisted that I dig out an ice cream cone to serve, but that's purely optional. It did make a nice picture, but no one actually ate it that way.

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P.S. - the popper I have is aluminum, but the stainless one looked better, so I linked to this one:

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