Sweet and Spicy Chipotle Kettle Corn

Ingredients:

  • 3 Tablespoons canola oil
  • 1/4 cup of your favorite unpopped popcorn kernels (I love ladyfinger popcorn.  So small, so cute, so tasty!) + 3 extra kernels
  • 1/4 cup granulated white sugar
  • salt to taste (start around 1/4 teaspoon and work up from there.)
  • ground chipotle pepper powder to taste (start around 1/4 teaspoon and work up from there.)

Regular Pot Instructions:

In a large heavy-bottomed pan with a tight-fitting lid, heat the oil and the 3 extra kernels over medium high heat with the lid in place.  Shake the pan every 10 seconds.  When you hear the three kernels pop, act quickly (while wearing oven mitts.)  Dump in the 1/4 each of popcorn kernels and sugar.  Put the lid back on very quickly and start shaking in a circular motion. Listen to the popping of the kernels.  It should pick up in tempo until you can’t distinguish the popping of individual kernels.  Keep shaking the pan. After that it will gradually decrease. This is where you need to pay the most attention.  When the popping tapers off to the point where you hear a two to three second pause between pops, you need to pull the pan off the heat and empty it into a bowl very quickly.

Whirly Pop Instructions:

In a Whirly Pop pan, heat the oil and the 3 extra kernels over medium high heat with the lid in place.  Keep turning the Whirly Pop handle.  When you hear the three kernels pop, act quickly (while wearing oven mitts.)  Quickly open one side of the Whirly Pop and dump in the 1/4 each of popcorn kernels and sugar. Knock the lid back into place very quickly and start turning the handle. Listen to the popping of the kernels.  It should pick up in tempo until you can’t distinguish the popping of individual kernels.  Keep turning the handle. After that it will gradually decrease. This is where you need to pay the most attention.  When the popping tapers off to the point where you hear a two to three second pause between pops, you need to pull the pan off the heat and empty it into a bowl very quickly.

~~Now for the good stuff…

No matter which way you cook it, when you’ve emptied it into a large bowl, sprinkle with salt and chipotle powder to taste, toss and stir with a long wooden spoon.  You don’t want to stir by hand because that melted sugar seriously burns!  Let cool for a couple minutes and then dig in!  Kettle corn keeps well in a paper bag with the top folded down and crimped for a day or two at room temperature.