Sunday, January 8, 2012

Praline Popcorn Crunch

Praline Popcorn Crunch

My mom found this recipe in her local newspaper (Contra Costa Times) back in 1985 when they lived in Danville, California. I have no idea who submitted the recipe. But boy, oh boy is it good. The popcorn is sweet like buttery toffee and the crunchy sweet pecans add a lovely nuttiness. This is one of our favorite holiday treats.

It also makes a great gift if you're looking for a little something to give to colleagues or neighbors.

Praline Popcorn Crunch

10 cups popcorn (~1/3 cup un-popped or 2 bags plain microwave popcorn.)
1 c. light brown sugar
1/4 c. light corn syrup
1/2 c. unsalted butter (1 stick)
1/2 t. vanilla
1/2 t. baking soda
1 cup whole pecans (optional)

Pre-heat your oven to 300º

1. Grease 2 cookie sheets with butter.
2. Pop the popcorn, remove all the kernels. Spread out on the baking sheets. Set aside.
3. In a medium saucepan combine the brown sugar, butter and corn syrup. Cook over medium heat until boiling. Continue cooking at a gentle boil 5 minutes - stirring constantly. VERY IMPORTANT. (Set your timer.)
4. Remove from heat.
5. Immediately add the baking soda and vanilla. Stir (briefly) until well combined.
6. Immediately pour the mixture over the popcorn and stir to coat all the popcorn. (You may notice the texture changing. That's ok. Just move fast!)
7. Sprinkle the pecans over the popcorn.
8. Bake in a 300º oven for 15 minutes. Take the pans out. Stir the popcorn to make sure all the kernels are coated and bake 5 minutes more.
9. Turn the popcorn mixture onto a large sheet of waxed paper. Cool. Store covered.

I prefer making popcorn the old fashioned way on the stove. I ONLY use Orville Redenbacher popcorn. The kernels are bigger when popped.

To make plain popcorn on the stove:
1. Lightly coat the bottom of a medium saucepan with Crisco vegetable oil.
2. Add a single layer of popcorn to the pan. (Do not add more. The single layer will fill the pan completely once popped.) Cover the pan.
3. Turn heat to med/med-high.
4. Shake pan gently a few times as it's popping. Take off the stove when the popping starts to slow down - about two seconds in between pops.
5. Watch out for the hot steam when you remove the lid. Immediately remove from the popcorn from the pan and let cool. You don't want the steam to soften it. I like to open up a brown grocery bag and pour out the popcorn to cool.



  1. Posted this one on my GF site. Hope you don't mind?!

  2. Sure! Make sure you don't over cook the toffee. It will still taste fine. But it won't have a shine to it.

  3. Uh, just now read this post - DARN! Maybe next year?? D'oh!

  4. DOH! No popcorn this Christmas. That is very, very sad. I think I made three batches just for us!!!


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