Quick post because I was just so excited at how clever I was just now! So… I am a popcorn-aholic. Guilty. I eat it almost every night that I’m at home with no other plans. Especially if I’ve gone to the gym because I’ve got some extra calories to burn.
This started out like any other night. Get a couple tablespoons of popcorn out of the fridge (perfect amount for a snack for me), grab a pot with a lid that fits, pull down the oil, and get started.
But this time, I got a brilliant idea. Because I’m always thinking about ways to lighten up the things I love to eat, I wanted to figure out how to make my toppings stick, but not add a bunch of extra oil or butter.
I had decided in my head already that I wanted to put chili powder, basil, oregano and garlic salt on the popcorn. Kinda pizza-ish. Then the Frank’s Red Hot was staring at me in the cupboard. So duh, I had to add that as well. I got out my spices out and got ready to cook.
So normally, I would pop the corn either on the stove or with my craphole air popper. Then I’d either toss in some oil or butter (or spray with my mister if I’m feeling extra healthy) and put on my toppings. Here’s where the genius comes in – I put my spices in the oil while I popped the corn, rather than sprinkling them on in the end!
Spicy Popcorn with Frank’s (serves one, feel free to up the quantities for more people)
2 Tbsp popcorn kernels (I like white kernels, but I think that’s just because my mom always said it was better)
1/2 Tbsp neutral oil (I used Costco’s Mediterranean blend)
1/4 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp dried oregano
salt and pepper
1 tsp Frank’s Red Hot (or whatever hot sauce you like; Crystal is tasty too)
Anyone that’s ever made stove top popcorn knows the drill. But for you newbies, I’ll lay it out. Much to my surprise, my roomie had no idea how to pop popcorn on the stove… I thought this was a down-home trick that all the midwest and southern ladies knew!
Put the oil in a pot large enough to hold a few cups popped corn with a lid that fits. Turn up the heat to medium high and drop in three cold kernels. Yes, three. Let that sizzle away uncovered until the first kernel pops. Toss in the rest of the kernels and remove from heat for 30 seconds (to bring the kernels up from fridge temperature). Now is when you toss in all the spices – so be quick!
After 30 seconds, put the pot back onto the hot burner and put the lid on (but not securely – the air needs to escape). Nothing will happen at first, but every few seconds shake the pot to get the heat distributed and swirl the corn around. You might want to use some hot-pad holders if your lid doesn’t have a handle, because it will totally fall off if you’re not careful 😉
Once the popping starts, it will be quick. Keep shaking the pot, every 10 seconds or so, until the popping slows to a couple seconds between pops. That’s when you know it’s finished. Don’t keep it on there or you’ll burn it! I usually only have one or two kernels that don’t pop this way. It’s very efficient, and totally delicious.
Last but not least, shake the Frank’s a few times over the top. Toss to coat and add a little more to be sure.
Grab a napkin, and enjoy!
PS: It’s only 140 calories for the whole thing! So chomp chomp chomp