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Flavoured Popcorn

Few Facts About Popcorn:

  1. Popcorn is a type of corn kernel that pops when exposed to heat.
  2. It’s one of the oldest snacks in the world, with evidence of it being consumed as far back as 4700 BC.
  3. Popcorn is a whole grain and a good source of fiber.
  4. It’s a low-calorie snack, with about 31 calories per cup of air-popped popcorn.
  5. Popcorn is commonly consumed in movie theatres, but is also a popular snack at home and in offices.
  6. It can be flavoured in a variety of ways, including sweet, salty, buttery, and spicy.
  7. In the U.S., about 17 billion quarts of popcorn are popped each year

The Benefits and Side Effects of Popcorn

Here you will have to evaluate the pros and cons not only of the popcorn itself, but of the additives and combinations. The product itself is nothing more than ordinary corn, the grains of which open up under the influence of high temperature, turning into a delicacy. But a “pure” taste is not enough for a person, and he adds butter, caramel, sugar and other flavours to the dish.

Before you cook homemade popcorn in a pan, you need to think about what to add and what to refrain from. But first about the benefits. Corn is an excellent source of minerals and vitamins needed by the body, which are perfectly absorbed. Nutritionists highly rated this product because they found that popcorn:

  1. Normalises metabolism, accelerates metabolism, prevents the formation of fatty tissues. It helps those who want to lose weight by speeding up metabolic processes.
  2. It has a low calorie content, so it can be included in the diet for weight loss. Swollen, open grains have a large volume and quickly fill the stomach, eliminating the feeling of hunger.
  3. Promotes the elimination of poisons and toxins, cleanses the intestines of toxins. Corn is high in fibre, which means it can become a regular staple of any cleansing diet.
  4. Raises the tone, has a healing effect due to minerals that activate the body to make it easier for it to produce energy.
  5. Prevents the development of cancer. Polyphenols, found in abundance in every grain, have powerful antioxidant properties.
  6. It acts as an excellent prophylactic for diabetes mellitus – again due to the high fibre content. It lowers cholesterol and blood sugar levels.
  7. Recommended for people with heart disease. There is nothing in it that would load the cardiovascular system. And mineral compounds successfully normalise its work.

If we talk about how to cook popcorn at home in a pan, it usually does not do without additives that should improve its taste. Considering that oil is often added to the pan, a list of disadvantages of this useful product emerges:

  1. Dehydration. This effect is due to the fact that sugar or salt is often added to corn. As a result, the balance in the body is disturbed. But even without this, popcorn negatively affects the pancreas.
  2. It can cause exacerbation of pulmonary diseases and the appearance of substandard formations. There is no contradiction here: if you constantly cook in oil and do not change it, the effect will be just that.
  3. Causes allergies and upset the gastrointestinal tract – again due to additives. At first glance, harmless, they turn into poisons and carcinogens after heat treatment, causing harm to health.

Therefore, it is better to cook popcorn in a corn pan at home than to buy store-bought. You don’t know what oil it was cooked in, how often it was changed, what was added, in what quantities. You can’t even tell if the grain was good or not.

How to Choose Corn for Popcorn

Here are some tips for choosing the best corn for making popcorn:

  1. Look for whole kernel popcorn: The best popcorn is the whole kernel variety, as it is less likely to contain broken kernels or unpopped seeds.
  2. Choose the right color: Popcorn kernels should be a uniform, creamy white color. Avoid kernels that are yellow, brown, or have any dark spots.
  3. Check for freshness: Popcorn should be fresh and dry, without any signs of moisture or mold. The kernels should be plump and free of any cracks or holes.
  4. Choose the right variety: Different varieties of popcorn have different popping rates, so consider which one you prefer. Some popular varieties include butterfly, mushroom, and pearl.
  5. Store properly: Store popcorn kernels in a cool, dry place, and be sure to use them within a few months to ensure optimal freshness and popping quality.
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By following these tips, you can choose the best corn for making delicious and crunchy popcorn every time!

As soon as the temperature rises to 100 ° C, the drop will turn into steam. Since this will happen instantly, the grain will “explode” and open. And starch does not allow the particles to scatter, holds them together and gives the opened grain a bizarre, unique shape.

How To Cook Sweet Popcorn in a Pan

Here’s how to make sweet popcorn on the stove:

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup popcorn kernels
  • 1 tablespoon oil (canola, vegetable or coconut oil)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Instructions:

  1. In a large, deep saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat.
  2. Add a few popcorn kernels to the pan and cover with a lid. Wait until they pop, then add the rest of the kernels.
  3. Stir the kernels to evenly distribute the oil and place the lid back on the pan.
  4. Hold the handle of the pan and shake it gently over the heat to keep the kernels moving and prevent burning.
  5. When the popping slows down, remove the pan from the heat and transfer the popcorn to a large bowl.
  6. In a small saucepan, melt the sugar and salt over low heat until the sugar dissolves.
  7. Drizzle the melted sugar mixture over the popcorn and stir to evenly coat the kernels.
  8. Serve immediately and enjoy your sweet popcorn!

How To Make Salty Popcorn at Home

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup popcorn kernels
  • 2 tablespoons oil (canola, vegetable or coconut oil)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
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Instructions:

  1. In a large, deep saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat.
  2. Add a few popcorn kernels to the pan and cover with a lid. Wait until they pop, then add the rest of the kernels.
  3. Stir the kernels to evenly distribute the oil and place the lid back on the pan.
  4. Hold the handle of the pan and shake it gently over the heat to keep the kernels moving and prevent burning.
  5. When the popping slows down, remove the pan from the heat and transfer the popcorn to a large bowl.
  6. Sprinkle the salt over the popcorn and stir to evenly distribute it.
  7. Serve immediately and enjoy your salty popcorn!

Similarly, you can cook popcorn in a pan in a bag from the store. Then just salt it and you’re good to go.

Caramel Popcorn Recipe

Here’s a simple recipe for making caramel popcorn at home:

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup unpopped popcorn kernels
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 250°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Pop the popcorn kernels according to your preferred method (e.g. on the stove, in the microwave, in an air popper).
  3. In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.
  4. Add the brown sugar, corn syrup, and salt to the saucepan and stir to combine.
  5. Bring the mixture to a boil and let it boil for 5 minutes, stirring continuously.
  6. Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the baking soda and vanilla extract.
  7. Pour the caramel mixture over the popped popcorn in a large bowl, and stir to evenly coat the kernels.
  8. Spread the caramel popcorn evenly on the prepared baking sheet.
  9. Bake for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes.
  10. Remove from the oven and let it cool completely.
  11. Break the caramel popcorn into pieces and serve. Enjoy!

Popcorn in Honey-Caramel Glaze

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup unpopped popcorn kernels
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 250°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Pop the popcorn kernels according to your preferred method (e.g. on the stove, in the microwave, in an air popper).
  3. In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.
  4. Add the brown sugar, honey, and salt to the saucepan and stir to combine.
  5. Bring the mixture to a boil and let it boil for 5 minutes, stirring continuously.
  6. Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the baking soda.
  7. Pour the caramel mixture over the popped popcorn in a large bowl, and stir to evenly coat the kernels.
  8. Spread the caramel popcorn evenly on the prepared baking sheet.
  9. Bake for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes.
  10. Remove from the oven and let it cool completely.
  11. Break the caramel popcorn into pieces and serve. Enjoy!

How To Make Cheese Popcorn

Everything is simple here:

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup unpopped popcorn kernels
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
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Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 250°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Pop the popcorn kernels according to your preferred method (e.g. on the stove, in the microwave, in an air popper).
  3. In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.
  4. Add the grated cheddar cheese to the melted butter and stir until melted and combined.
  5. Pour the cheese mixture over the popped popcorn in a large bowl, and stir to evenly coat the kernels.
  6. Spread the cheese popcorn evenly on the prepared baking sheet.
  7. Bake for 10 minutes.
  8. Remove from the oven and let it cool completely.
  9. Serve the cheese popcorn immediately. Enjoy!

Popcorn in the Microwave

In this case, it is better to take a package from the store, the recipe is already written on it. If the oven has a Popcorn function, great. And if not, then put the bag in the oven, slam the door, turn it on at full power for 2-3 minutes (depending on the power of the oven).

Popcorn in Air Fryer

Here’s how to cook popcorn using an air fryer in a healthier way :

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup unpopped popcorn kernels
  • 1-2 teaspoons oil (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the air fryer to 400°F.
  2. If desired, add 1-2 teaspoons of oil to the bottom of the air fryer basket.
  3. Add the popcorn kernels to the air fryer basket in a single layer, making sure they are evenly spread out.
  4. Place the basket in the air fryer and close the lid.
  5. Set the timer for 5-7 minutes, depending on your air fryer and desired level of popcorn crunch.
  6. Once the timer goes off, check the popcorn to see if it’s done to your liking. If not, continue to cook for a few more minutes until it reaches your desired level of crunchiness.
  7. When the popcorn is done, remove the basket from the air fryer and pour the popcorn into a bowl.
  8. Serve hot and enjoy!

We listen to how the grains explode, and watch how the package increases in volume. When the “explosions” subside, turn off the cooking mode, take it out, open the package, pour the finished dish onto a plate.

Conclusion

In conclusion, popcorn is a versatile and delicious snack that can be enjoyed in a variety of flavors and forms. It is a whole grain that is low in calories, high in fibre, and can provide important nutrients like complex carbohydrates, protein, and antioxidants. Whether you prefer sweet, salty, cheesy, or caramel popcorn, there are many easy recipes to choose from to make at home. So, next time you’re looking for a tasty and healthy snack, consider grabbing a handful of popcorn!

Popcorn is a great snack, but it can’t be a complete meal. Do not try to replace them with breakfast, lunch or dinner. You don’t have to use it every day either.

Check out other articles:

Strawberries: health benefits and harms

How to Make the Egyptian Petitfour (Butter Cookies Recipe)

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