I have a friend, who shall remain nameless, who really hates Valentine’s Day. He constantly groans on that Valentine’s Day is a creation made by the greeting card companies, and he will not be fooled into spending good money on “crap” such as roses, chocolates and cards. Jeeze – he’s a real buzz kill during this time of year. Bless his suffering partner, let’s call her Julie, she deserves a medal. Today’s recipe is for Julie – maple caramel popcorn. She asked me to share a recipe for popcorn as it is my friend’s favorite thing to eat when watching a movie, and he loves to watch movies.
You see, although my friend says that he hates Valentine’s Day, nearly every year he and Julie spend Valentine’s Day evening together at home watching a movie. They get themselves a large tub of popcorn, some chocolate and soda – they don’t drink, and they have a nice night together enjoying the treats they reserve for their quiet nights at home.
I know what you’re thinking: isn’t this the epitome of the perfect Valentine’s evening? Well yeah! but don’t tell my friend that!
Julie is tired of buying those big packs of popcorn with artificial flavors, she wants to make her own, and make it a little decadent, but not too out there so as to raise suspicions, because if my friend suspects the popcorn she is making is “Valentine’s” popcorn, it will be a wrap for their cozy night in. He’s so silly.
My friend loves sweet, or sweet and salty popcorn, so maple caramel popcorn is going to make him swoon. It’s deliciously sweet, with just a touch of salty and way more tasty than store bought popcorn. Julie plans on making him a big bowl to devour while she sits back and watches him smile as he tastes the maple caramel. He’s going to love it, and she hopes her homemade popcorn turns her miserable love miser into her personal Eros.
Maple caramel popcorn is super easy, so give this recipe a try the next time you plan on having a cozy night at home.
- 1/2 cup popcorn kernels
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 1 cup of salted butter (2 sticks)
- Air popper or 3 qt pan with cover
- Large mixing bowl
- Baking sheet
- Parchment paper
- Pop kernels in either an air popper or as directed on the packet, and then place in large bowl.
- Place butter, sugar and maple syrup in pan and melt over high heat.
- Do not stir, simply swirl the contents around in the pan until the ingredients are completely combined and begin to boil until you have your caramel.
- Pour caramel over popcorn in four portions and toss popcorn between each portion of caramel.
- Transfer popcorn to a parchment lined baking sheet and bake in a preheated oven at 300 for 30 mins.
- Check at the 15 min mark and toss popcorn to get a golden color on all sides of the popcorn.
- Once caramel has nicely adhered to popcorn removed from oven and allow to cool.
- Serve when cool.