Wednesday, June 22, 2011


I am quite convinced that there are few treats better than a bowl of warm popcorn. It can be pretty healthy when it is eaten as is, with no adornment.

But, seriously, who does that? (Please note: Yes, I do know some health nuts that do eat it plain, but really...)

The mandatory butter and salt treatment always serves it well. But sometimes it is good to venture out and try something new. Popcorn isn't just relegated to movie theatres anymore!

Our friends took us out for dinner some time ago and we were served popcorn as an appetizer at a super fancy-pants restaurant. And one of my favourite cookbooks also has it in their "starters" section. Great while you wait for the BBQ to warm up with drinks on the patio!

Some tips:

First, get yourself a hot air popper. You can find them at garage sales, thrift stores and other similar discount stores for a super deal.

Then, go buy some popcorn in bulk. Why? Because it is cheaper and you will be addicted after trying these recipes! Regular corn is one of the top GMOs, so I choose organic whenver possible. You can usually buy organic popcorn at any bulk food store section.

Then pop away...what will you try today? Olive oil?  Spicy? Savoury? Butter and salt? Or plain jane? Whatever you do, you won't be able to stop the pop!

Olive Oil Popcorn
Please do not use plain old olive oil in this one. Get a good quality olive oil to really enjoy this one! First cold-pressed versions are tastiest.

1/2 cup popping corn, air pop it!
2- 3 tbsp cold- pressed olive oil (the richest colour is best!)
sea salt

1. Toss hot popcorn with olive oil. Add some sea salt to taste.

Savoury Popcorn
I adapted this recipe from one of my favourite cookbooks, Rebar Modern Food Cookbook. I found the flavours in the Rebar recipe good but too strong for my taste. I also eliminated the nutritional yeast as I don't usually have that ingredient. I was thinking that some pumpkin seeds would be great in the mix too!

1/2 cup popping corn, air pop it!
1/4 cup butter
1 garlic clove, minced or crushed (I use strong organic garlic, you may need 2 regular cloves for the same effect!)
1 tsp chili powder (the reddish kind is nice here)
1 tsp dried, rubbed sage leaves (not powder)
1/8 tsp ground cayenne pepper, to taste
1/4-1/2 tsp sea salt, to taste

1. While popcorn is popping, warm butter, garlic and spices in small saucepan on stove until melted and fragrant (or microwave for 30-40 seconds in a small bowl).
2. Toss with popcorn and salt, to taste. Serve immediately!