I can’t think of a better New Year’s Eve snack than this Caramel Popcorn with Coffee Salt. The rich golden colour adds that celebratory feel and the taste is just phenomenal.
I adapted the recipe from the Spicy Salted Caramel Popcorn recipe I posted earlier this year from Sam Linsell’s book called Sweet. Even though I am not the biggest fan of the salted caramel craze (I find most combinations overdone with saltiness, thereby spoiling the caramel flavour), salt always adds a layer of depth to sweetness and there is an added layer of richness by adding some coffee to the mix. I have kept the coffee salt to a minimum in the recipe (it adds to the flavour rather than being a distinct flavour of its own) but suggest you double the salt & coffee mix and serve some of it on the side to satisfy the salt and coffee lovers.
Caramel is one of those things that needs to have your full focus when making. Make sure to remove it from the heat the second it reaches the hard crack stage as there is no way to save the dark bitterness of burnt caramel.
This has been such a wonderful year for heinstirred.com and I excited about what 2016 will bring. The first few months will see the publication of two books I photographed this year and I can not wait to share some of the images and recipes. There have been so many kind words of appreciation and new friends from all over the world and I am incredibly grateful to have this spot where I can share the recipes I love, my photography and travels. I am back in the new year serving up new recipes and look forward to our journey in food and photography.
- 125g popcorn kernels
- 2 tsp vegetable oil
- 125g butter
- 175g white sugar
- 2 tbsp golden syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 ½ tsp freshly ground coffee granules
- 1 tsp salt
- Preheat the oven to 120 degrees C
- Line a baking tray with baking paper
- Make the popcorn as per packet instructions
- Once popped, place the popcorn in a large bowl/pot big enough to toss the popcorn with the caramel
- Bring the butter, sugar and syrup to the boil in a heavy based pot
- Stir constantly until the mixture turns a sandy brown colour and reaches the hard crack stage (150 degrees C on a sugar thermometer)
- Take the caramel off the heat, add the vanilla extract and bicarb of soda and stir very well until you have a glossy sauce
- Pour the caramel over the popcorn and toss to coat evenly
- Spread the popcorn on the baking tray and bake for 15 minutes
- Remove the popcorn from the oven and toss it again to cover with the caramel
- Repeat the baking process once more and give the popcorn one final mix when it comes out of the oven and let it cool
- While cooling use a pestle and mortar to grind the salt and coffee to a fine powder
- Once the popcorn has cooled, break it up if necessary and sprinkle with the coffee salt
- Serve more coffee salt on the side if desired (make double the mix quantity)
My best wishes to all for 2016. May it be healthy, happy and of course delicious!
** This recipe first appeared in the Sunday Times Food Weekly