Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A Sweet Valentine Gift

Happy Valentines Everyone!  I mentioned yesterday that Valentines Day isn't too big of a deal around here.  Honestly, other than for the kids' it's just another day.  I didn't even go to the kids' parties at school today.  Both were strictly-speaking kids-only (meaning their teachers wanted it to be a low-key affair), although volunteers don't usually have quite as strict standards...and I usually volunteer on Tuesday in Oren's class, but if other parents weren't coming, I didn't feel right about being there.  PLUS I have a TON of things to do here at the house, so I sent lots of goodies and heart-felt store-bought valentines and stayed home.  ;)

Yes, these are the pics from last year.  Imagine it looking exactly the same except in white heart-shaped bowls instead...

 BUT, that doesn't mean that we didn't get their teachers something a little special.  Last year I made the most delicious flavored popcorn around this date, and I haven't made it since, so I remedied that by making a double batch yesterday.  I then packaged up a bag for each of the kids' teachers along with a bag for some friends that came to play yesterday afternoon and a bag for a friend whose birthday is today.  That left about a bag's worth for us, but after everyone had had a bite or two, I may or may not have scarfed it all down myself and then regretted it later...


It's both delicious and deliciously easy to make, so give it a shot.  You'll be glad you did!

Cinnamon Sugar Popcorn
  Based on MACCO's recipe from allrecipes.com  My changes and additions are in pink.


Ingredients
1 cup unpopped popcorn

  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ( I added a handful of pecan halves and maybe 1/2 to 3/4 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips.  Sorry, I didn't measure.  I also doubled the butter/cinnamon sugar ingredients for more oomph this time.  That's up to you!)

  • Directions
  1. Preheat an oven to 250 degrees F (120 degrees C). Pop the popcorn using an air popper according to manufacturer's directions. Place into a large mixing bowl, and set aside.  I popped my corn on the stove top in a pan and I also added the pecan halves to the bowl of popcorn when done.
  2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the sugar, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla, and cook until thick and bubbly. (Last year I misread the recipe and poured it all in the pan together and melted it down. This year I did it right...I don't think it made two bits of difference.)  Pour over the popcorn, and stir until the popcorn is evenly coated. Spread the popcorn into a large roasting pan.  (I actually spread it onto 2 parchment paper-lined cookie sheets.)
  3. Bake in the preheated oven 10 minutes, then turn the heat off, and allow the popcorn to stay in the oven 20 minutes longer. Remove from oven, and cool completely before serving.
  4. When it had cooled some, I melted a BIG handful of chocolate chips in the microwave and then drizzled it over the popcorn on the cookie sheets.  When the chocolate had cooled and hardened, I poured the mixture into cellophane bags and tied them up with cute LOVE ribbon!

P.S.  I'm linking up with Debbie today.  She hosts a linky party every Tuesday specifically about food!  Well, it is like one of my most favorite things in the whole world..how has it taken me so long to get a food post up on Tuesdays??  Head over and see what else is cooking over there.

3 comments:

  1. Kelli, this looks so good! I bet it makes your house smell great, too!

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  2. Yay for joining us at the table! Your popcorn sounds delish & I need to try that! Yum. Sounds like you had a fun day - thanks for linking up!

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  3. Mmmmmmmm...I love making popcorn balls. This looks like an amazing recipe. I'm going to have to try it. I love that you added chocolate. I always eat popcorn with homemade fudge. My mom and I have always done that. Sounds weird but it is ADDICTING!

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