Tuesday, January 8, 2008

My new favorite trick...

Did y'all know being sick is BORING?

Well, it is, and has left me with time to troll the internet for hours at a time, searching for knowledge to spread to you, my friends. So, how 'bout this...

Did you know you can make your own microwave popcorn with a brown lunch sack and some staples??? ME EITHER!

My mom and I share a love of popcorn, and I eat it quite a bit. Back when I was a single gal, I had several popcorn dinners, in fact. Mom got not one, but TWO popcorn poppers for Christmas this year, and I am about to burst her corny bubble and make them completely obsolete.

There's been some press lately about some pretty un-healthy things in your microwave popcorn, not to mention that those little bags are pretty expensive (especially when you consider just a bag of popcorn kernels is about $1 and will make about 50 servings of popcorn, vs. $3-5 for a three-bag box of the microwave stuff), so popping your own holds several advantages. This way you can flavor, salt, oil, and butter your own mix to exactly your tastes. I shunned the microwave route for good ol' fashioned stove top years ago, but that can be messy, and you have to babysit the pan, and, well, I almost always burn some. This, on the other hand--so easy, and not a bit of mess. So, here's the trick:

Get yourself a brown paper bag, and some popcorn. About 1/4 cup at most for lunch bag sized servings. If you want to be uber-healthy, you can air pop it, and at this point you have all you need. If you're like me and the tape worm you've recently acquired leaves you unconcerned about extra calories, add a teaspoon or two of oil to your corn. At this point, you can add some flavorings too--I mix in kosher salt, some garlic powder, and some cayenne pepper, but you do whatever you want. You can even add a bit of sugar for kettle corn (a tip I read but haven't tried yet). Dump the mixture into the lunch sack, and fold the top over twice. Staple it. (I know, staples in the microwave? But the truth is, it's not enough metal to make even a tiny difference in your microwave, it's totally safe, just don't touch the staples when the bag comes out, they will be hot!) Now pop (ha!) the whole thing in the microwave, set for 2-3 minutes, and let 'er rip. You'll want to stick close and take the bag out when the popping slows down (just like with commercial microwave popcorn). Take your big ol' bag o' popcorn out, and tear open carefully (steam! hot staples!) I melted a little butter for mine as well, and a shake or two of parmesan cheese, because I'm sick and I can do what I want. Magnificent!

I promise this works, I promise you won't burn you house down, and I promise that when I do this again tomorrow, with a fully charged camera battery, I'll post some pictures too!

Now, if you already knew about this, please don't comment to tell me that your mom has been doing this since she got her first microwave in 1972 and that I am not your popcorn guru. You are clearly more enlightened than me, and while you're mentally shaming me, why don't you shame yourself for not sharing this information with us all sooner.

Now go eat some popcorn!


KatieKate said...

Love. Brown. Bag. Popcorn.

'member when our moms used to make it before the whole fam went to the movies and you'd walk in with three sandwiches hidden in your jacket and she'd be behind you with gas station milk duds and that HUGE brown bag of goodness? Oh man. It was awesome.

CortneyTree said...

I remember very clearly little ziploc baggies of popcorn and a can (!) of Coke, which, you of course had to open at exactly the right point in the movie as to not give away your sneakyness--a feat at which I did not excell--the movie was totally loud, then just as I'd crack that can, we'd go to a big bright white deadly silent shot, and the neon arrow would light up over my head, letting everyone know it was me. If I'da known about this back then, we'd all have been brown bagging it instead :)

Anyway, I seriously think this stuff *tastes* better than stovetop and everything, even though I can't really say why that would be. LOVE. IT.

sunday said...

i promise i won't tell you that i already knew about this. i PROMISE!

CortneyTree said...

Thank you Sunday! Although, to be honest, it appears everyone BUT me already knew about this, so, I guess it's okay for you to admit it too. :) How on earth did this escape my attention all this time? Oh well, so much for sharing my new trick!

Quirky said...

Well, your popcorn trick was new to me! I'm very impressed. I can't wait to try it. Now I just have to pick up some brown bags. And popcorn. And maybe some salt and oil. But then! THEN I will try my hand at brown bag popcorn!