Just to give you a sense of how good this stuff is, I made it on Sunday and it was gone on Tuesday… and we didn’t share any of it. If Cracker Jack and Mrs. Claus had a baby, it would be gingerbread caramel corn… no kidding. This stuff is just screaming for a movie night and a big cup of cocoa, so get your pj’s ready.
Gingerbread Caramel Corn
- 3/4 cup popcorn kernels
- enough vegetable oil to cover the bottom of a large pot (2-3 Tbsp)
- 1/2 cup margarine (I used smart balance, butter is fine)
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/8 cup molasses
- 1/8 cup corn syrup (or honey or agave)
- 1/2 Tbsp. ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- pinch cloves
- pinch nutmeg
- pinch salt
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
Preheat your oven to 250 degrees. Line two sheet pans with parchment or silpats.
Add 2-3 Tbsp of oil to a large pot (enough to cover the bottom) over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the popcorn kernels.
When the first kernel pops put the lid on and shake the pot every 5-10 seconds. When popping ceases, transfer the popcorn immediately to the biggest bowl you’ve got. If you don’t have a monster bowl like me, split the popcorn between two bowls.
Now start your caramel. Put the margarine, brown sugar, molasses, corn syrup and spices in a small pot over medium heat. Bring the mixture to a boil and continue to boil for 5 minutes.
After 5 minutes, take off the heat, add the baking soda and stir until completely foamy. Then pour over the popcorn and stir gently to coat.
Spread the popcorn over the two prepared sheet trays and baked for 45 minutes, taking the trays out every 15 minutes to stir and flip the popcorn. (Do not skip the stirring and flipping! I have done this… you get big puddles of caramel at the bottom of the pan, still delicious, but not quite as fun.)
After 45 minutes, take the caramel corn out of the oven, stir one more time, and allow it to cool… if you can wait.
The kittens LOVE popcorn, this is Leroy’s face looks like when he sees it: