This recipe for Coconut Curry Caramel Corn is a surprisingly easy weekend treat. It will fill that sweet & salty place in your heart with candied peanuts and a soft zing of spices. Lightly adapted from Susan Feniger’s Street Food .
Y’all. I had to give every last morsel away. It was too good. I don’t trust myself around things that are too good. Specifically, sweet things. Specifically specifically Coconut Curry Caramel Corn.
If you haven’t been on the Insta today, then you may not know this, but today, April 6th, is National Caramel Corn Day. The Insta is where I find out about all these fun foodie holidays and I find myself thinking at the very last minute — Oh! National Margarita Day? Lemme skip the gym and hit up happy hour. Or — Oh, man! I didn’t know it was National Breakfast in Bed Day. Hey, honeyyyyy… How about I get dinner in bed?
See? I cannot miss out on such important food things. It’s like living a half life. So I got smart and I found this handy-dandy food calendar. I’m not sure how comprehensive it is because I was in the middle of catching up on news articles yesterday when I found out that yesterday, April 5th, was National Deep Dish Pizza Day and I’m pretty sure I would have remembered a day like that if I had read about it, especially seeing as how I live in the The Deep Dish Capital of the World. Maybe I’m making that title up, but if Chicago hasn’t yet been christened with it, what is our mayor even doing, pray tell?
Ohmygosh. So shortest story ever made really long, but I knew National Caramel Corn Day was coming up and I happened to be reading a cookbook (Yes, I read cookbooks in my spare time. I am one of those people who can’t watch TV and relax. I always have to be doing something else at the same time, so sometimes I read cookbooks while I watch TV and then I restart the episode four times and then I basically give up on TV altogether because it turns out I can’t quite multitask like I think.). Anyway. I was reading a cookbook and I happened to come across this recipe for Caramel Corn that I couldn’t NOT make seeing as how I have a profound love for coconut curry that has always existed inside of me, but which has grown that much deeper since my visit to Thailand last year.
We know how much I love coconut curry because:
- Mussels in Red Coconut Curry
- Easy Thai Coconut Curry Noodles
- Red Lentil and Summer Vegetable Thai [Coconut] Curry
- Chilled Mango Red [Coconut] Curry Soup
And you guys, that’s just on the blog. Then add in all the times it rains and I need to order Thai food for delivery and then also add in all the times my fridge is full of veggies and my stomach is hungry and I make coconut curry because I always – ALWAYS – have those ingredients on hand.
And now I can add to my recipe list with my first coconut curry sweet treat. It’s that sweet and salty combination, the crunch of candied peanuts, the soft zing of spices, the toast of coconut, and that addicting hand-to-mouth action that happens over and over and over again until Coconut Curry Caramel Corn disappears.
I put the entire batch in a gallon-sized bag (or what was left after the taste-testing anyway. There was a lot of taste-testing. These were my most time-consuming photos because I had to stop between each shot to taste-test.) and then I brought said gallon-sized bag over to the boyfriend’s. But first I made a last minute decision to save a sandwich-sized bag for myself that I could eat the following day after I’d gone for a run and eaten some fruit and maybe some lettuce and really worked for it. But then I ended up eating a bunch of the boyfriend’s because he couldn’t keep his bag closed. He couldn’t even keep it out of my reach because my arm span increases in direct proportion to a food’s tastiness. And then at the very, very end of the night, I broke out my personal stash sandwich bag and polished that off too. Oy vey.
I’m telling you now, do not get started on Coconut Curry Caramel Corn unless you are prepared to not stop.
Coconut Curry Caramel Corn
This recipe for Coconut Curry Caramel Corn is a surprisingly easy weekend treat. It will fill that sweet & salty place in your heart with candied peanuts and a soft zing of spices. Lightly adapted from Susan Feniger’s Street Food.
- 1 cup shredded coconut
- 1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
- 2/3 cup popcorn kernels
- 1 cup Planter’s Salted Caramel Peanuts* or honey roasted peanuts
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/4 cup light or dark corn syrup
Preheat oven to 250 degrees F. Liberally coat a large glass or aluminum mixing bowl with cooking spray.
Spread coconut in a single layer on a sheet pan and toast it in the oven, stirring once or twice, until golden and fragrant, about 8 minutes. Set aside to cool, leaving oven on.
Meanwhile, add oil and corn kernels to a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Cover and shake the pot occasionally until the popping begins, about 3 minutes. Once the popping starts, shake the pot continuously until the popping slows dramatically, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and continue shaking until the popping stops entirely. Dump the popcorn into your prepared mixing bowl. Add toasted coconut and peanuts.
Liberally coat a rubber spatula, wooden spoon, and a large sheet pan with cooking spray. Combine salt, baking soda, and all your spices into a small bowl and set aside.
In a medium saucepan, combine butter, brown sugar, and corn syrup. Heat over medium-high, stirring occasionally with the prepared spatula, until the butter is melted. Continue cooking, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and becomes foamy. It is ready when the bubbles get noticeably larger and slower. Add in your spice mixture and stir quickly to incorporate. Immediately pour the hot caramel over the popcorn mixture. Stir with the prepared wooden spoon until the popcorn is evenly coated.
Pour the popcorn onto your prepared baking sheet and spread into an even layer. Bake 1 hour, stirring every 20 minutes to keep from burning. Remove from oven and let popcorn cool to room temperature. It will get crispier as it cools. Serve immediately or store in an airtight bag or container for up to 4 days.
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