Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Candy Caramel Corn


Candy corn and peanuts are one of my favorite fall snacking combinations.     I'm not sure why I limit it to fall.  Candy corn is, in fact, sold in stores year round.   It's just tucked in small bags in the candy aisle rather than having front of the store product placement.    

Growing up, I didn't care for caramel corn.   Just regular popcorn with real butter, please.   Commercial caramel corn still doesn't do it for me, but if it's homemade or from a small local popcorn place....that's a different story.

Last year at this time, the movers had already come to my house in Colorado and packed up all my stuff.   I was in the midst of goodbye parties and the install of new carpet.   Guess which was more fun?   

Practicing our shakas
As I've mentioned before, since there isn't really a change of seasons, it's hard to switch gears into fall mode.  To get in the Halloween spirit, I went to the Haunted Haiku Hike on Sunday.   I've never been on a haunted hike before....though  I have been to something  creatively called Terror in the Corn. 

My list of traditional fall type activities so far this year:  
1) shopping for a Halloween costume             
2) a haunted hike  
3) making this  popcorn

What You Need

10 cups of popped popcorn
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup butter
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup salted peanuts, divided 
1 cup candy corn....be honest, you can use as much as you want

What You Do

Line two 9x13 baking pans with foil coated with cooking spray.   Preheat oven to 200.
Divide the popped popcorn between the two pans as well as the peanuts.  

In a medium saucepan combine the brown sugar, corn syrup, butter, cream of tartar and salt.   Heat on medium until boiling, stirring consistently.    Allow caramel to boil for 5 minutes.   Remove from heat, and add the baking soda.    Whisk until fluffy.     Pour half of the caramel over each pan of popcorn and use a spatula to toss and coat so that most kernels have a little caramel on them.  

Bake for one hour, stirring every 20 minutes.      When done baking, turn out onto waxed paper and sprinkle the candy corn.   It won't readily stick to the popcorn, so you  may want to push it a little bit. Let the popcorn cool and break into smaller pieces if necessary.       Store in an airtight container.

Other Popcorn You Might Like to Snack On

Thin Mint Popcorn
Macadamia Nut Caramel Corn (with no corn syrup)
Peanut Butter Snicker Corn

What's your favorite fall snack combination?

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