Fall Recipes

maple-almond-popcorn-1A couple of years ago, a dear friend gave me the most wonderful gift—a recipe book that is more than just a recipe book.  This beautiful book is inspiring and filled with stories that surround the food. It flows from a lifestyle of a family who enjoy, make, and share the blessing of good food together—-real, good food made with love and infused with time and intentionality. The stories included in this book are not only endearing and accompanied by beautiful photography of the author’s family, but they are insightful and helpful as well.

homemadepantryThe Homemade Pantry: 101 Foods You Can Stop Buying and Start Making.” by: Alana Chernila.

I highly recommend adding the book to your collection, but for now I’d like to share a teaser recipe.  We first made this delicious treat for Christmas packages, but as fall has rolled in and weather begins to chill, my mind fills with warm images of caramel apples, popcorn, pumpkin spice, coffee, cider, etc. and I am craving some of this homemade goodness. This is all around a great holiday season treat.

Maple Popcorn

Ingredients:
1 cup (8 oz) unsalted butter, plus additional to butter the bowl and pans
1 cup unpopped popcorn
1 cup maple syrup
3/4 cup raw sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract (fyi she includes a recipe for homemade Vanilla Extract in her book)

Instructions:

1. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F. Butter two 9 x 13-inch baking pans and your largest bowl.

2. Pop the corn according to your preference and transfer the popcorn to the buttered bowl.

3. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter with the maple syrup, sugar, and salt.  Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and let it cook, without stirring, for 5 minutes.  Add the baking soda and vanilla and stir to combine.  The mixture will foam up and bubble and smoke.

4.  Very gently (or your popcorn might deflate!), pour 1 cup of the sugar mixture over the popped corn and stir until evenly coated.  Coat with more sugar mixture and stir again, repeating until all of the sugar mixture is coating the popcorn.  Divide the popcorn between the two baking pans
It really is worth it not to rush and to do this portion slowly and carefully–it makes a big difference in the quality and texture of the popped corn–she’s not kidding about the deflating factor. Embrace the art of the project, take your time, and enjoy it!  😉

5. Bake for 1 hour, stirring the popcorn every 15 minutes.  Cool before serving.

Storage:
Room Temperature–covered container, 3 weeks
Freezer–freezer-safe container or bag, 6 months (great right out of the freezer)

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