Monday, July 14, 2014

Recipe: Homemade Popcorn

This really can't even be called a recipe--but I'm not sure how else to phrase it! Until about two years ago, I always made microwave popcorn because it was so easy, and I could get it very cheap with coupons. And then I learned how bad it is for you. Like very very bad.

The bags are lined with perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). This chemical is the same toxic stuff found in teflon pots and pans. When heated, this chemical has been linked to infertility, cancer and other diseases in lab animals. No long term studies have been conducted on humans, but the EPA lists this substance as a carcinogen. 

Brands like PopSecret and JollyTime still use trans fat, which I don't think I even need to explain.

TBHQ is found in Smart Balance-which sounds health(ier), right? Tertiary Butylhydroquinone is a chemical made from butane and can only be used at a rate of 0.02% of the total oil in a product. Eating 1 gram of this preservative can cause all sorts of issues from asthma to dizziness and has even caused stomach cancer in lab animals. I also just learned butane is found in cooking sprays, like PAM as well. Sad day.

Anyway, sorry I got on a rant. Back to the "recipe." We found a basic recipe for stovetop popcorn using 2 ingredients: coconut oil and corn kernels, and have adapted it to our liking. It takes all of 5 minutes and the hardest part is cleaning the pot. So I let it soak=less work for me. :) It also makes a LOT--more than my husband and I can usually eat!


3Tbsp coconut oil
1/2 cup corn kernels
butter (optional)
salt (optional)

1) Heat oil in a saucepan on medium to high heat
2) Put in 3 or 4 kernels and cover the pan
3) Within a few minutes, you should hear the kernels start to pop-you know the oil has gotten hot enough to add the rest! Add the rest of the 1/3 cup in an even layer and cover the pan again 
4) Take the pan off of the heat for 30 seconds, just enough time to let the kernels heat up to a near popping temperature.
5) Return the pan to heat, the kernels will start popping immediately. Within a minute, the popping should slow, and you know the popcorn is finished. (You might want to leave the lid slightly ajar to release steam during this step as well).
6) Put into a stainless steel or glass bowl and add any additional toppings (salt, butter, seasonings)
7) Enjoy your much healthier version of popcorn!
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