Caramel Popcorn Recipe
- 15 cups popped corn
- 2 tablespoons corn oil
- 1 cup unsalted butter, diced
- 1-½ cups light brown sugar, packed
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon rum extract
- 1 teaspoon coarse salt
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- sea salt for sprinkling
- Keep popped corn fresh in a 200°F oven spread in two foil-lined baking pans.
- Cook corn oil, butter and light brown sugar in a large heavy pan over medium heat. Stir constantly until it boils and candy thermometer registers 300°F. Scrape bottom of pan to avoid sugary clumps later.
- Remove pot from heat and stir in vanilla, rum extract, coarse salt and baking soda. Stir vigorously until thick and glossy. Pour over popped corn while stirring until evenly coated. Sprinkle with sea salt and toss again.
- Return pan(s) to oven and increase temperature to 300°F. Bake for 30 to 45 minutes until crispy, tossing popcorn every 15 to 20 minutes. Break up any clumps or clusters using a wooden spoon while tossing.
- Remove pan(s) from oven and allow to cool coated popcorn. Keep separating any clumps until completely cooled. Serve immediately or store in airtight containers for longer freshness.
- For popcorn bars, double the contents for caramel mixture and cook as per recipe instruction. Pour over a mix of chopped nuts, rice crispies, chocolate chips and popped corn. Spread and firmly press onto the bottom of a foil-lined pan generously brushed with butter. Allow to cool in pan for 10 minutes and score top with a sharp knife. Once candy is completely cooled, lift out of pan using foil as “handles.” Cut along scored lines and serve.
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