Thursday, May 17, 2012

make your own microwave popcorn

did you know that you can make your own microwave popcorn by just putting popcorn kernels in a paper bag?! thanks to pinterest for pointing this out.
making your own popcorn not only saves you $$, but you can control what goes into it - those flavorings and the film left on the microwave popcorn bags you buy in the store always gave me the creeps, and a little googling on the toxicity of microwave popcorn turned up issues with the chemical diacetyl, which gives that "buttery taste and smell" in commercial microwave popcorn. it turns out that some factory workers in popcorn bagging plants suffer from "popcorn lung" - you've heard of "black lung" disease, yep this is the popcorn version, technically known as bronchiolitis obliterans, a severe scarring of the lung tissue resulting from inhalation of diacetyl. There's some concern for consumer safety as well, from heating and then inhaling the fumes associated with microwave popcorn, and it looks like several companies have stopped using it, though not all. which is all to say - i'm so glad i found out that you can just make your own. and stop relying on companies to make your food for you.

it's this easy:
take 1/3 cup of popcorn kernels.
put them in a lunch sack sized paper bag.
fold the top of the bag over twice (no staples or glue or anything needed - plus you don't want those things in the microwave anyway)
cook them on high for about 3 mins or until there are 2-3 seconds between pops (depending on the strength of your microwave).
that's it.
here are some of my favorite popcorn topping recipes.
plus lately i've been experimenting with a balsamic vinegar, rosemary, maple reduction stirred into melted butter - fabulous!

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