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Verses from my Kitchen: Gourmet Popcorn 3 ways

December 1, 2010

Gourmet Popcorn 3 ways

This is the story about a little kernel that could. Gourmet popcorn that sums up my love for all things savoury and delicious. It's made with the finest and freshest ingredients, like premium butter and fresh herbs, Parmigiano Reggiano and caramel sauce. Real flavour and real ingredients. Irresistible snack food.

The combinations of flavours and styles are boundless. My wife still loves classic popcorn with premium melted butter, sea salt and fresh cracked pepper. Simple but fresh and addictive. It's a throwback to drive-in movies and a tub of popcorn that barely lasts the previews. I still fall for the classics but I'm equally satisfied with the sweet and salty fusions and creations today. The new classics.

I like mixing and matching flavour profiles depending on my mood. The all-time favourite caramel popcorn with luscious butter notes and sticky brown sugar sweetness. The taste will hook you for life. Why stop there? We can take it up another level with a few other ingredients that will let the caramel really sing.

Using caramel popcorn as the base, I like it kick it up with a batch of Spicy Rosemary Caramel Popcorn. The juxtaposition between the crunchy kernels and the sweet and soft caramel sauce is fantastic, plus the addition of the aromatic rosemary and cayenne pepper add a lovely flavour with a hint of spice to this recipe. Sweet and spicy heaven.
Spicy Rosemary Caramel Popcorn

Starting with fresh-popped kernels, I love making a batch of Parmesan Tarragon Popcorn from time to time.  The combination of the lemony-sour end to tarragon and the sharp-flavoured Parmesan adds a punch of gourmet to the popcorn I grew up on.  This is the type of sweet treat I can't stop eating.

Parmesan Tarragon Popcorn
Using the fresh kernels as a starting point, I love turning out a cluster of Thyme and Sea Salt Popcorn. A splash of really good olive oil acts as a binding agent to the kernels. Flavourful thyme sticks tight to the popcorn with a good mix and works really well with coarse sea salt. The perfect savoury, salty bowl to grab and sit down for a movie.

Thyme and Sea Salt Popcorn with Black Pepper.

Spicy Rosemary Caramel Popcorn

The Goods:
3 tbsp. vegetable oil
1/3 cup popcorn kernels
1/2 stick unsalted butter
2/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/3 cup corn syrup
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/3 tsp. baking soda
2 tbsp. rosemary leaves
1 tsp. cayenne pepper


1. Place 3 kernels and oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Once the kernels pop, add remaining kernels to pot and place lid over it (leaving a gap for steam to escape).

2. As the kernels pop, shake the pot until the popping slows down to about 2-3 second between pops. Remove from heat. 

3. Melt the butter, sugar and syrup in a medium pot over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil. Continue boiling, without stirring, for about 7 minutes until you smell a hint of caramel and the sauce becomes golden in colour. Remove from heat. Add the vanilla and baking soda. The mixture should bubble up and look frothy. 

4. Add the caramel sauce to the popcorn in batches and add the rosemary and cayenne pepper. Put on a baking sheet and in the oven at 250 degrees for about an hour. Stir ever 15 minutes. Remove and cool. Serve.
Spicy Rosemary Caramel Popcorn

Parmesan Tarragon Popcorn

The Goods:
A batch of popcorn (recipe above)
3 tbsp. tarragon, chopped
1 cup Parmesan, finely grated
Extra-Virgin olive oil, to taste
Salt, to taste
Cracked black pepper, to taste


In a large bowl, drizzle olive oil over popcorn and toss thoroughly. Add chopped tarragon and Parmesan and salt and pepper toss again. Serve.
Parmesan Tarragon Popcorn

Thyme and Sea Salt Popcorn

The Goods:
1 batch of popcorn (see above)
3 tbsp. fresh thyme, chopped
Extra-Virgin olive oil, to taste
coarse sea salt, to taste


In a large bowl, drizzle olive oil over popcorn and toss thoroughly to coat. Add thyme, sea salt and toss again. Serve.
Thyme and Sea Salt Popcorn with Cracked Black Pepper

Three crazy-tasty treats to devour with loved ones over the holidays! Make one or make them all and you'll have plenty of good munchies to snack on when you throw on a holiday movie this season. Happy popcorn eating!

Gourmet Popcorn-3 ways

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At December 1, 2010 at 7:23 PM , Blogger Rosemary said...

these treats are like a meal...so yummy!!!
how come you havent done one of these when I visit?

At December 2, 2010 at 9:16 AM , Blogger Tes said...

I always love creative popcorn recipes. These are really inspiring :)

At December 2, 2010 at 8:19 PM , Blogger Diethood.com said...

I love playing up my popcorn!
I will try your Parmesan Tarragon Popcorn; sounds delish.

Kate @ Diethood.com

At December 2, 2010 at 8:40 PM , Blogger Michael Lewicki said...

Thanks Tes for visiting often! Sometimes it's just a matter of trial and error to get the result you want.

Thanks for dropping in Kate. It's a good change of pace from the classic way. Spice it up, right?

At December 10, 2010 at 3:44 AM , Blogger Ela said...

you are right. that little kernel really could!
your post has opened a new door for me on popcorns. never thought it has big possibilities.
thanks for sharing

At December 12, 2011 at 5:43 AM , Anonymous Gourmet Popcorn said...

officially made Gourmet Popcorn recipe last night and it was DELICIOUS. my sister, husband, and brother-in-law and i definitely got forks and went to town.Thank you for sharing this..


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