Is anyone else just really feeling fall all of a sudden? It might have something to do with our suddenly-much-cooler temps this week. Whatever is, I’m suddenly craving the warm, toasty flavors of the season. Which is why tonight, I’m encouraging you to make a tasty snack, snuggle up under a cozy blanket with your honey, and watch a little fall tv (or Hocus Pocus– I won’t tell!). You might have all of the ingredients for this quick snack in your kitchen already. If you don’t, it’s worth the trip to the grocery store, I promise!
Pumpkin Spice Popcorn with White Chocolate Drizzle
2 Tbsp coconut oil (divided)
1/3 C popcorn kernels
1 1/2 C brown sugar
1/2 C water
1 Tbsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1 bag Craisins
1 bag (or around 2 cups) of pecans or walnuts (or your favorite nut)
1 bag white chocolate chips (we love Ghiradelli)
You will also need:
1 large dutch oven with lid
2 cookie sheets
1 large bowl
1 medium sized saucepan
1 wooden spoon
1 cereal bowl (or small mixing bowl)
1 candy thermometer
In a dutch oven, melt 1 Tbsp coconut oil, and pour in 1/3 C popcorn kernels. Cover the pot. Over medium heat (and using pot holders), shake the pot periodically until you hear the kernels begin to pop. This can take a few minutes. Once they start popping, shake continuously so that the kernels don’t burn. Listen for the kernels to stop popping. Alternatively, remove from heat when the lid of the pot begin to lift from being over-full. Allow the popcorn to cool for a few minutes, and then scoop (do not pour– you’ll end up with extra, unpopped kernels from the bottom of the pot) into a large bowl.
Preheat your oven to 325 degrees (F), and spray two cookie sheets with cooking spray. In a medium sized saucepan, combine brown sugar and water. Stir to combine well, and then cook over low heat until the candy thermometer reads 235 degrees, or reaches the soft ball mark. If you don’t have a candy thermometer, you can cook the mixture 5-7 minutes, until it boils up and can’t be stirred down.
While your syrup is cooking, combine all spices in a small bowl. Pour over the dry, cool, popcorn, and toss to coat well. Layer nuts and Craisins over the top of the popcorn. Do NOT stir them in.
When syrup reaches appropriate temperature, remove from heat and pour immediately over the layered popcorn/nuts/Craisins. Using a long wooden spoon, stir gently, but well, coating the popcorn and causing the add ins to become stuck in the mixture. Popcorn should be lightly coated, rather than completely submerged in syrup. Pour popcorn mixture immediately onto two greased cookie sheets. Spread gently, and place in the oven, setting a timer for fifteen minutes.
When the timer reaches the last two minutes of cooking time, combine remaining coconut oil and white chocolate chips into a microwave safe bowl. Alternatively, you can re-use the saucepan you used to make the syrup. Just make sure it’s well rinsed first. Do NOT heat yet.
Remove popcorn from oven, and allow to cool to room temperature. Gently break large clumps apart.
Warm chocolate chip/coconut oil mixture slowly, either cooking over low heat and stirring constantly, or by microwaving in 30 second intervals, stirring after each. In either case, warm and stir continually until the mixture is completely smooth. If it doesn’t seem quite fluid enough for drizzling, you can add extra coconut oil, 1 tsp at a time, until the desired consistency is met. Using an oven mitt to hold the bowl, and a fork or spoon, drizzle the hot chocolate mixture over the popcorn. Allow chocolate to cool and harden completely. Store popcorn in an airtight container. Or…eat it all during the course of one movie. Totally do-able. Just don’t ask me how I know, m’kay?