Thursday, May 7, 2009

Sweet N' Spicy Popcorn Crunch

Check out this recipe for a delicious and nutritious treat, a healthy version of Cracker Jacks! These popcorn snacks will satisfy your sweet tooth, are made without refined sugars and are vegan. Try to get organic ingredients as much as possible, since organic is better for you and the planet.
  • 2 tablespoons safflower oil
  • 1/2 cup popcorn kernels
  • 1 cup salted and roasted peanuts
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) Earth Balance Natural Shortening
  • 1 cup brown rice syrup powder
  • 1/4 cup brown rice syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper, set aside.
  2. In a large heavy-bottomed pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add 3 popcorn kernels and cover until they pop. Add remaining popcorn kernels, cover, and shake pot continuously over burner until popcorn is completely popped, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer popcorn to large bowl, add peanuts and set aside.
  3. Combine Earth Balance, brown rice syrup powder, and brown rice syrup in a medium pot over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally until brown rice syrup powder has dissolved. Increase heat to medium-high, and cook, without stirring, until golden brown, about 5 minutes, swirling pot occasionally.
  4. Remove mixture from heat and quickly stir in sea salt and cayenne with a heatproof spatula or spoon. Immediately pour over popcorn mixture and stir to incorporate. Divide popcorn mixture evenly between baking sheets. Transfer to oven and bake, about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Let cool on sheet pans before breaking apart into clusters. Store popcorn in an airtight container for up to 1 week. Enjoy!

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