This really is the week from HELL. My husband is in the hospital with a re-ocurring health problem. It totally sucks. Plus, on the way to the hospital i got a speeding ticket, and my car tag had not been paid. Double Whammy! Were are the sympathetic police officers when you need them? Apparently, not in the ATL area. :(
When I am stressed I eat. So I whipped up this caramel corn quickly to munch on, at home and in the hospital. I am sitting here at my husbands bedside, as I type this. Also a nice distraction from all that is going on.
We will miss Thanksgiving. I do not know if i will bake anything.. all the fresh pumpkins I roasted for pies, and cakes...now frozen for another day.
My sister in law-Marianne, has taken some popcorn with her while flying back to Virginia. The security check point insisted she could not take this on the airplane. She was puzzled?.."Why it is not fluid?" Then the officer laughed and said," It is because I want to eat it"
At least the Delta is helping keep things "light":)
Caramel Nut Corn
Adapted from Martha Stewart
I changed the directions from the original recipe. I have made this several times. When you pour the caramel directly into the popcorn it cools soo quickly it is difficult to mix, so the heated pan helps. I find the baking pans too shallow, so i use a deeper roasting pan. Then I don't knock popcorn all over my oven. Plus, as the popcorn continues to be heated in the oven it melts slowly and distributes over all the popcorn evenly.
Makes 16 to 18 cups
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, plus more for pans
3/4 cup corn kernels ( I like a lot of caramel, so I use 1/2 cup popcorn )
2 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
2 cups almonds, lightly toasted ( I also added @ 1 cup red skinned peanuts)
2 cups packed light-brown sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
Place a very large roasting pan in cold oven to heat to 250 degrees.
Place corn kernels and oil in large pot, partially covered, over medium heat. Once popping begins, shake pan frequently; when popping slows down, about 3 seconds between pops, remove pan from heat and uncover. Transfer popped corn to a large bowl; add almonds, peanuts, Set aside.
In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, butter, and corn syrup over medium-high heat; stir to dissolve sugar and melt butter. Cook, stirring constantly, until it reaches 255 degrees on a candy thermometer.
Remove pan from heat; stir in extracts, salt, and baking soda. It with foam and turn white-ish
Remove heated pan from oven. Spray with non-stick spray. Working quickly pour 1/2 of caramel mixture into pan. Pour ALL nuts and popcorn into caramel. Pour remaining half of caramel on top. Mix quickly until all of caramel coats.
Bake, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour and 20 minutes; popcorn will crisp when cooled.