It is time for Secret Recipe Club reveal day! Woo-hoo! What is the Secret Recipe Club? It’s a lot like Secret Santa, but with recipes. Each month you are assigned a blog. After selecting a recipe from that bloggers repertoire, you make and post it on reveal day. It is a great way to find fun recipes and blogs. I like how it gets me to actually sit down and go through another person’s blog. Blogs are a lot of work and take time to put together. Instead of skimming through just the new stuff (as is usually easier when we see a new blog) it is fun to really sit down and go through what else the blog has to offer. Fun stuff!
This month I was assigned Katie’s blog Betcha Can’t Eat Just One. And, whoa, does her blog live up to it’s name or what? YUM-O-LICIOUS! And the nifty thing is, she even has a gluten free category with a couple of things in it. Woo-hoo! I had the worst time trying to decide what to make. Would it be a muffin, a donut (she has a Citrus Coconut Doughnut that caught my eye) or a bar (her take on Vancouver Island Oat Bars is next on my list to try)… But I finally settled on something so simple and delicious that I was surprised I had never made it: Kettle Corn!
We live in Minnesota, home of Angie’s Kettle Corn, which is naturally gluten and dairy free. Even though I am a from scratch cook, I never worried about making kettle corn, when I had such a yummy one available from a local company that we were safe eating. But seeing that kettle corn on Katie’s site may have changed my kettle corn life forever…
Kettle corn is, in theory, not that big of a deal. It’s just sugared popcorn with salt, right? Au contraire! The sugar melts into the hot oil and encases each popped kernel in a thin, crispy shell. Then, then you add the salt and you will say “good-bye” to anything else you were planning on eating that day. Eating kettle corn freshly popped just minutes before knocks things like “salads” right out of your head. Consider it a warning. When Katie named her blog “Betcha Can’t Eat Just One” she meant it. It is the sweet/salty combo that does it. Scoop – Eat – Repeat. I just hope you are stronger than I.
A couple of notes: I use coconut oil to make popcorn. It is a good fat that I try to incorporate into out diet and it adds a buttery flavor without the butter to freshly popped corn. Mmm… To make this recipe, I also used my Whirly Pop stovetop popcorn maker that I got for Christmas which was the perfect pan to make this with. They are only about $20, and perfect for making popcorn while camping and for kettle corn. Get yourself one! If you don’t have one, then use a large pot with a lid and swirl and shake the pot over the heat constantly while making this. Also, for those of you who like to mix-it-up, try some of the variations below inspired by the kettle corn places you find at the mall. It dresses up your Kettle Corn for a gift or for your own pleasure. :)
VERY slightly adapted from Katie at Bettcha Can’t Eat Just One for the SRC
4 tablespoons coconut oil
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup popcorn kernelsM
salt, to taste
Add the coconut oil, sugar, and popcorn to the whirly pop. Snap down the lid. Put pan over heat and start cranking the handle on the pan to stir around the popcorn mixture. When all the popcorn has popped, remove from heat. Pour popcorn into a bowl and salt to taste. If you have any left over cool completely before storing in an air-tight container.
Caramel Kettle Corn: Replace 2 tablespoons of the sugar with 2 tablespoons brown sugar.
Chocolate Drizzled Kettle Corn: Melt 1/4 cup gluten and dairy free dark chocolate with 1 teaspoon coconut oil and drizzle over kettle corn. Allow chocolate to cool and set, then break break apart the kettle corn.
Cinnamon OR Pumpkin Pie Spice Kettle Corn: Add 2 teaspoons cinnamon OR pumpkin pie spice to the pan with the oil before popping.
Cocoa Kettle Corn: Add 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder to the pan with the oil before popping.