Lately my husband and I have had a craving for caramel corn. I decided it was time to make a batch so we could just get that craving over with. I whipped out the old air popper from the back of the cupboard, hauled out the bowls and paper bags and got out the recipe.
Later as we sat eating our bowlful of caramel corn we started to reflect on the expectations I used to have when I made popcorn when our boys were small.
I always had the vision of three boys, freshly bathed, sitting in their jammies eating popcorn. In my vision these boys (Thinking back I am not sure whose boys I was seeing in my dreams) were quietly holding their colorful Tupperware bowls full of white buttery popcorn. They were eating their treat slowly, kernel by kernel and avidly watching the family friendly movie I had checked out from the local library.
Also in this vision my living room was dusted, vacuumed, and had everything in it’s place. The vision resembled a Norman Rockwell painting.
For some reason the reality of popcorn/movie night with our family never ended up looking quite like that Rockwell painting. It started out with great expectations…..three boys were freshly bathed, had colorful Tupperware bowls with popcorn and a movie was playing.
After that it went downhill. Three boys were soon scrambling around on the floor, arguing about who was sitting in who’s space or who had taken someone’s bowl. With all the scrambling around going on the popcorn did not stay in those wonderful bowls and ended up under the couch, behind the end tables and everywhere but in the bowls.
By the time the movie had ended and they had been put to bed our living room looked like there had been an explosion in a popcorn factory. I was crabby and my husband would gently (and sometimes with a smirk) remind me that we had “real” little boys and this is how they acted……he would know as he had three brothers and a sister.
Our popcorn/movie nights are much quieter now with just the two of us. No scrambling children and no popcorn flying to land behind the furniture. Those previous nights now are just memories that bring a smile to our faces…..it is always easier to smile when popcorn explosions are memories!
If you are the parents of small children and want to give the popcorn Rockwell vision a try or you just have a craving for something sweet, here is a great recipe for caramel corn.
Microwave Caramel Corn
8 quarts popped popcorn
2 sticks butter
2 1/4 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup white corn syrup
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
Divide the popcorn into two large bowls.
Boil butter, brown sugar, syrup, and salt in heavy saucepan for 5 minutes, stirring constantly.
Add: vanilla and stir in.
Remove from heat and stir in soda
Divide and pour over popped popcorn.
Stir and pour each bowl of popcorn into a large brown paper grocery bag.
Microwave each bag for 1 1/2 minutes, remove and shake,
microwave 1 1/2 minutes more, shake and pour into bowl.
Can also be baked in oven on flat pans at 250º for 1 hour – stirring every 10 minutes.
NOTE: I use real butter as I think is does not get as greasy.
I also like to use an air popper for the popcorn.
My family is my strength and my weakness.
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan
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