Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Snow Days and the Weather

Usually, I think being stuck home all day is a treat, but yesterday, I was burning up with cabin fever. A friend called in the morning having decided to learn to make brioche from Julia Child's The Way to Cook. Baking may have been a theme of the day as IndyNess learned biscuits. I decided that just because I work at home didn't mean I couldn't take a snow day.

After I cancelled a lunch and Neal Brown re-scheduled the Seven Deadly Sins Dinner at L'Explorateur for Thursday, Feb. 15, the rest of the day was mine.

I worked a bit, cleaned the house a bit, read a bit, lounged around a bit, and even took a shower. While on the WeLL, I found a perfect recipe for caramel corn. So, I made caramel corn. (Yes, I keep Karo syrup in the pantry which is frightening, I know.) It was a great treat although I enjoyed the straight popcorn just as much as the sticky kind. I still have some leftover for being snowed in just a little today.

Snow Day Caramel Corn

6 cups popcorn
1 cup peanuts, cashews or almonds (optional)
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp baking soda
Salt to taste

Preheat oven to 250 degrees.

Combine popcorn and nuts (if using) and spread in a shallow roasting pan.

In a heavy saucepan mix sugar, butter, and corn syrup. Stir over med heat until boiling. Continue boiling for 5 minutes without stirring. Remove from heat; add vanilla and baking soda. Pour caramel sauce over popcorn; stir to coat well.

Bake for 1 hour stirring several times. Remove from oven and spread on wax paper. Add salt to taste. (I like a little salt with my sweet.) As the corn cools, keep breaking up the pieces and removing them from the wax paper before they stick. Store in a cool, dry container.

I had to pop the popcorn in a pan on the stove (old school) and didn't have any peanuts so I used cashews. It came out very much like Poppycock. Perfect for TV night and being stuck in the house. Also good with beer. Good luck digging out today -- and if you're so inclined, Happy Valentine's Day.

1 comment:

Melody said...

OMG. This sounds awesome. We don't have any corn syrup in the house. If we make it out to the grocery later, I will attempt this.

BTW-- you might already know this, but you can pop regular bagged popcorn in the microwave in a brown paper bag (lunch bag size). Put a quarter cup of popcorn in the bag, fold the top down 3 times making sure you leave plenty of room in the bag for the puffed-up corn and pop on high for 2 to 4 minutes, depending on your microwave (takes about 2 min, 15 sec for ours). You can melt the butter separately and pour on after.