Friday, March 8, 2013

Maple Popcorn

Thursday evenings are sacred. They mark the close of my workweek, and are mine exclusively: other household half works until nearly nine on Thursdays. After toiling at work and at the gym, I come home, curl up on the couch with the kits, light some candles, crack a fine craft beer and pop in a movie. To add more comfort to this gloriously leisurely and peaceful scene might verge into overkill, but there's always room for the extra indulgence of freshly popped, warmly buttered corn. Since an impending Montreal vacation has been factoring heavily into my daydreams, I pulled out some of the exquisite syrup stash I have stocked up from last time and dribbled it in with melting butter to dress the popcorn. It made for an excellent batch - buttery, sweet, salty, perfect to munch while moviewatching. Pop yourself up a bowl and enjoy!

Maple Popcorn
Makes about 8 cups

*3 scant tablespoons of high smoke point oil
*1/3 cup unpopped corn kernels
*1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon butter
*1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon high quality maple syrup (No Jemima piffle, c'mon)
*Salt to taste 

Heat the oil in a large pot over just north of medium heat. Meanwhile, melt the butter with maple syrup in a small saucepan or in the microwave. To test the oil, put a few kernels into the pot and cover; wait until you hear them pop, and then add the full third cup to the pot.  Cover and remove from the heat for about 30 seconds, shaking the pot to evenly distribute and oil the kernels. Return the pot to medium heat and continue shaking the pot by moving it back and forth on the burner while the kernels explode within, occasionally pausing to pop the edge of the lid up ever so slightly to let steam out. Once the popping slows to several seconds in between pops, remove the pot from the heat and pour it into a very large bowl. Add the maple butter, toss, and salt to taste.

My Thursday eve

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