Taking a little more time to make popcorn on your stove is well worth it!
Popcorn is such a great and inexpensive snack. You need some kernels, oil and heat and you have a really fresh batch of popcorn. It can be seasoned simply or with plenty of different seasonings. Popcorn is unique; in the paper, “Physical Properties of Popcorn Kernels” author Erșan Karababa describes how popcorn is able to pop, “...it has a very hard pericarp and outer layers of endosperm, which permit the internal pressure and temperature to rise high enough to pop” (100). There are different types of kernels, rice and pearl that produce different types of popcorn. “Rice type have long kernels with a sharp point at the top and are historically associated commercially with white popcorns. Pearl types are round with no sharp point at the top and are historically associated commercially with yellow popcorns” (Karababa 100). Rice type kernels, those you would get from a commercial kettle corn stand, are more robust. “The larger kernel types are preferred by vendors as large kernels produce larger flakes that have good eye appeal and are tougher, to reduce breakage from handling even though they may have more hulls (Karababa 100). Whichever type of kernel you choose it’s a great snack and even more rewarding when you make it yourself!
Makes ~ 14 cups popcorn
2 Tbsp olive oil
½ cup popcorn kernels
1. Place the oil and 3 kernels in a large lidded pot over medium heat.
2. When the kernels have popped, add the rest of the kernels and mix to coat all the kernels in oil.
3. Place the lid back on the pot and allow it to continue cooking over medium heat. Once the popping slows pull from the heat and shake the pot around to allow the remaining kernels to pop.
4. Add salt to taste and continue shaking until evenly distributed.
5. Serve and enjoy.
Karababa E. Physical properties of popcorn kernels. Journal of Food Engineering. 2006;72(1):100-107.