Today was one of those days, a series of synchronicities and inspiration. It all started with a post from my friend, Meadow Linn. Meadow and her mom, Denise Linn, recently co-authored a fabulous book called “The Mystic Cookbook“. It is SO much more than just a cookbook, I highly recommend it… but I digress.
Meadow had shared a post about popcorn, how it makes a great breakfast food, since it’s a grain and all. The thread evolved to discussion about popping corn (air poppers vs. stovetop in oil) and then to sharing recipes. Meadow was kind enough to pull out a recipe she had posted quite a while back…and that was all I needed to inspire me!
Ralph shelled it all when he was shelling his grain corn for this year’s seed, and we have more than enough popcorn to last us until next summer’s crop. The tiny kernels actually popped up nice and big!
I added some peanuts to the popcorn and let it cool in a large bowl. Meanwhile, I measured out the honey (from our local farmers’ market, of course!) and added a nice dollop of maple syrup (also local), with some water and a bit of sea salt, and brought it to a boil. The next step called for the addition of baking soda. Note to self: next time, use a much larger saucepan/pot. As soon as I added the baking soda – POOF! Instant science experiment, with this foaming mass rising up to the top of the (smallish) pan. I quickly took it off the heat, and transferred it to a larger saucepan and continued on my merry way. The recipe called for a candy thermometer to let me know when the bubbly mixture reached 260F, so I improvised and used my digital meat thermometer. Once that was done, I added some coconut oil (rather than butter) and poured it all over the popcorn/nut mixture. It tossed quite easily, and I decided to spread it out over a cookie sheet, to help it cool off quickly. Sorry that I have no pictures up to this point, but I was a bit excited and preoccupied with the process and forgot!
Needless to say, once cooled, this was a fabulous treat! I managed to eat only several handfuls before I stored the rest of it in an air-tight cookie tin ;) As Meadow said, the popcorn does tend to be a bit sticky, but in a good way! It doesn’t stay stuck to your teeth forever like some brittle does. And the sweetness was just about perfect. Before I forget, you can find Meadow’s recipe here. (I did use about 1/4 cup of maple syrup to replace some of the honey, and I also used coconut oil instead of butter.)
Two things stand out for me about this whole experience…okay, three if I include how grateful I am for all my cyber friends.
The first is that there were so many locally sourced ingredients used, as well as organic (only the peanuts were not, but I will change that for next time). The second thing I am VERY happy about is that, because this is an open-pollinated corn variety, the seed that we have saved can be planted this spring, so that we can enjoy popcorn next winter, too!
Seed sovereignty and the right to save seeds is a topic that is very dear to my heart. If you like to grow vegetables from seed, it should be close to your heart, too. Growing and preserving heirloom varieties, and saving seed for future planting is critical to help protect these incredible varieties. Now is the time to stand up to companies like Monsanto and tell them we want to keep our diverse seed population.
(Okay, I’ll get off my soapbox now…) If you’re looking for the seed for this great popping corn, you can find it a West Coast seeds, in B.C. Happy popping, and thanks for dropping by!
** March 6: This article popped up (yes, that was a pun!) on my computer today. More info on losing our seed diversity…”Seed Control and GMO Companies“