Saturday, December 3, 2011

Caramel Corn


On the fourth day of Christmas treats I give to you - Caramel Corn! I get requests for this every year, and one of the reasons I love this recipe so much is because it stays gooey and doesn't harden.  There is nothing worse than having to chip off a bunch of hardened caramel corn, and having it crumble all over.
This recipe does make a TON - and I usually have to stir it in a large plastic toy bin! (Washed out, of course.) haha :)

I recently made this for my kids' school carnival bake sale. 

Didn't these turn out so cute? I would buy them! ;)

2 c popcorn kernels (makes 32 c popped)
2 2/3 c light brown sugar
1 c white corn syrup
1/2 c butter (1 stick)
1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
Pop 2 c popcorn kernels in an air popper, and place in large bowl - or toy bin. ;) Remove the unpopped seeds as you go, so no one chips a tooth later.
In large saucepan, heat brown sugar and corn syrup.  Bring to a good boil.
Add butter and sweetened condensed milk.  Cook slowly until soft ball stage. It takes a loooong time, sorry - but it's totally worth it!  
(In case anyone might not know what a "soft ball stage" is, the easiest way to do this is drip a tiny bit into a glass of cool water - then pull it out and squish it between your fingers, if it is sticky at all, it's not done yet.  It should kind of spring back and stay in a little ball shape.)
After caramel is all nice and ready, coat popcorn and stir evenly. 
Here is another way I like to do it:
Chocolate covered, anyone??? I think YES!

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