| Microwave Caramel Corn
Part of the hesitation in making caramel corn is the sticky, gooey mess
that remains once you've finished making it. You almost need a blow torch
to remove the hardened sugary stuff from your pans.
Help is on the way! This recipe can be made in your microwave, and when
you're finished, you can just throw the paper sack away.
This doesn't mean that it doesn't take a little preparation time, but
at least you can relax and enjoy the finished product without having to
worry about a lot of cleanup.
Next time you go to the grocery store, ask for your groceries in paper
bags. You'll need one bag per batch.
Here's what you'll need:
3-4 quarts popped corn
1 stick of butter (no substitutes!)
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup Karo Syrup
1 tsp baking soda - add last
Pop the corn and discard the unpopped kernels. Put the popped corn in
the paper sack. While the corn is popping, put the butter, sugar, salt
and syrup in a glass bowl and bring it to a boil in your microwave. Stir
after one minute, and let it boil for an additional minute. Add one tsp
of baking soda and stir well, until thickened. It will turn light in color
and look like taffy. Pour this mixture over the popped corn in the paper
bag and shake well. Put the paper bag back in the microwave and cook an
additional 1-1/2 minutes (90 seconds). Remove and shake well again.
Return to the microwave and cook another 1-1/2 minutes. Shake again.
Open the bag and let it cool. You can even tear the bag down the side
and speed up the process.
Plan to make more than one batch because you'll want to eat the first
one! Great for Christmas or birthday gifts. I gave this as a Christmas
gift to my co-workers one year and the next year they started hinting
for it again in September.
Once completely cooled, break up the chunks, put it in a plastic holiday
bag and tie with a festive ribbon. If you eat a lot of ice cream the containers
with lids make a great receptacle for packing the caramel corn. Save your
ice cream containers throughout the year, wash them out, line with plastic
wrap and stick a bow on the top. Include the recipe and directions unless
you want to tell them it's an old family secret, but let me warn you that
if you don't share the recipe, they will come back next year begging for
Copyright 2002 Joyce Moseley Pierce
Joyce is a freelance writer and owner of Emerson Publications. She
is the creator of "All They'll Need to Know," a workbook to help families
record personal and financial information.She is also the editor
of The Family First Newsletter, an ezine for families with young children.
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