Kettle corn can be found throughout the United States. It is usually found being made in the fall at many festivals and events. It is a sweet and salty type of variety snack. It was first introduced in the 1700’s. It is thought to have originated from the settlements in Pennsylvania from the Dutch settlers. It was very popular until the early 1900’s. Then it sort of disappeared for a bit but, lately has made a strong comeback.
It is a favorite of many because it has less fat and sodium in it. It is less sweeter than Carmel corn.
You can make a small batch of kettle corn in about 20 minutes. It takes about 5 minutes to prep and about 15 minutes to cook. You will need a large pot, 1/2 cup of unpopped popcorn, 1/4 cup of white sugar, 1/4 cup of oil.
Place the popcorn in the large pot with the vegetable oil and sugar and heat over a medium flame. Constantly shake the pot so that the corn doesn’t burn. When it is done popping, let it cool slightly. It is ready to add a little salt if you want it.
You can use olive oil, although it is more expensive, for a cleaner taste. You can also limit the sugar as well if you desire. However, keep in mind that the sugar is what changes the taste. Try to use a high grain of corn for the best results.
Many times at an outdoor festival, you will see large cast-iron pots used to make large volumes of kettle corn. Usually they just double or triple the amounts. They will also use a large wooden paddle to stir the corn to keep it from burning.
Variations; Another method is to heat your oil but, don’t let it smoke or burn. Pop your corn shaking frequently. Then add powder sugar for about a minute. Continue to shake and then add brown sugar and reheat for about a minute. Continue shaking and remove from the flame. The sugar amount should be about half and half. Half powder and half brown.
Some people have added a bit of cinnamon, too. However, not too much.
Lastly, if you are ever at a festival where the kettle corn is being made, take the time to stop and watch it being made. The people that make it, usually have some secret recipes or processes to make it great.
Kettle corn when bagged right can last a long time and make an excellent treat for trick or treaters on Halloween. It is also great for activities outdoors, when the weather turns cold.