What started as a food blog has morphed into more or less a personal journal. My marriage, my parenting, my life journey is as likely to appear now as my kitchen work... but there's more than one way to feed a family.
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
During my childhood my mother made caramel corn once a year, to the delight of all at home and the in neighborhood. She made it as a homemade halloween treat for any trick or treaters who came her way. We lived out in the country, with a corn field behind us and across the road from us, but amid a little cluster of about five houses. It so happened that there were kids in most of those houses and, during our own trick or treating years, we managed to have a few T or T'ers of our own.
I have another fond memory of Mom's caramel corn. The college choir I was in went on retreat each fall for the purpose of group-building and to learn our fall program. The place we retreated to was a camp about ten minutes from my home. During one retreat, Mom stopped in to drop off some things I needed and some other things she thought I would enjoy. She brought an entire batch of caramel corn for me and my friends. I was Prom Queen of the choir for about twenty minutes, or until the caramel corn was gone.
6 qts. popped corn 2 c. brown sugar 1 t. salt 1/3 c. corn syrup 1 t. baking soda
Preheat oven to 200. In a large-ish saucepan... in fact, larger than you think - you'll need the space later.... combine brown sugar, salt and syrup. Bring to a boil and allow to gently boil for five minutes. Remove from heat and add the soda. When you mix the soda in, the caramel will "grow" visibly. Stir until the soda is adequately blended in, then use to coat the popcorn in a large roasting pan. This is a somewhat involved job. It's best to pour about a third of the caramel at a time onto the popcorn and stir to distribute the topping evenly.
Once you're satisfied with the caramel to popcorn ratio, pop the roaster in the warm oven for an hour, stirring every fifteen minutes. Once you remove the whole mess from the oven, I find it's best to stir it several times as it cools, too, as it will harden to a roasting pan-shaped brick if left to cool on its own.