Popcorn Balls and Caramel Corn
6 cups popped corn, unpopped kernels discarded
2 tablespoons butter
3/4 cup honey
1/4 cup water
1/4 teaspoon vinegar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup peanuts, roasted and salted*
Carefully pick through the popped corn and discard any unpopped kernels. Lightly brush a large bowl and wooden spoon with vegetable oil. Place the popped corn in the bowl.
Heat the butter, the honey, water, vinegar and salt. Stir until the butter melts and bring the mixture to a boil. Cover and cook for about 3 minutes while the steam washes down the sides of the pan, preventing crystals from forming. Uncover and allow to boil on high heat for 3 to 4 minutes. (If you have a candy thermometer, heat to about 250 degrees-- it is not necessary).
For popcorn balls:
Pour the hot syrup slowly over the corn, while stirring gently by sliding the wooden spoon down the side of the bowl and lifting up in the center. Continue to mix gently until all the kernels are covered.
For popcorn balls, let the mixture sit for a few minutes. While it is still warm but not hot enough to burn, form the popcorn into balls and wrap in plastic or waxed paper. Store in an airtight container.
*For caramel corn:
Add the peanuts to the hot syrup and pour the hot syrup slowly over the corn, while stirring gently by sliding the wooden spoon down the side of the bowl and lifting up in the center. Continue to mix gently until all the kernels are covered.
Continue to stir lightly for about 5 minutes, until it is cooled. Store in an airtight container.
Mix it up With Mani - by Mani Niall
This is so easy and fun to make. With parental supervision, its a great project with the kids. A nice alternative to all the cookies and candy, too.