3 tablespoons coconut, avocado, olive, peanut, or vegetable oil
½ cup popcorn kernels
1 tablespoon melted butter or to taste
½ teaspoon salt or to taste
Serves 4 Takes 15 minutes.
Add oil to pot. Heat oil using medium-high heat. Put 3 kernels in pot. Cover with lid. Wait until you hear them all pop. Add popcorn kernels as evenly as you can. Cover pot. Remove pan from heat for 30 seconds. This brings all the kernels to the same temperature so that they will pop at about the same time.
Return pot to stove. Shake the pot gently once popping begins to ensure even heating. Remove pot from heat when the interval between popping reaches 3 seconds. Remove from heat. Wait for 15 seconds. (This prevents kernels popping up to your face.) Remove lid and pour popcorn into large serving bowl. Sprinkle popcorn with salt. Drizzle popcorn evenly with melted butter. Gently stir popcorn to ensure butter on all kernels.
1) Mr. La Fong lived in Paducah, Kentucky in the early 20th century. He sold socks and loved stovetop popcorn. One Saturday he forgot to put the lid atop the pan with the popcorn. The absent minded Carl became the first human to really watch corn kernels pop. To his amazement nearly all of the popping occurred within a few seconds. During that flurry of activity, little kernels burst open to become much bigger popcorn. The thin layer of kernels on the pan erupted into a mountain of popcorn. Then popcorn flew out of the pan of the pan, rocketing to all corners of the kitchen.
2) Now, of course, La Fong possessed the rudimentary knowledge of Einstein’s equations necessary to any successful 20th century Kentuckian sock merchant. “Whoa ho,” said the worthy sock seller, “the universe itself must have started the very same way as this popcorn.” He wrote feverishly through the night to put down his The Big Popcorn Popping Theory of the Universe. He went to bed, exhausted yet proud. Unfortunately, his dog, Rex, ate his manuscript during the night. Later scientists would receive acclaim with the only slightly different Big Bang Theory. However, the eating of his theory, while unarguably bad for the Sock Man of Paducah, did give rise to the “Dog ate my homework excuse” which school kids have used ever since. So, some good came of it.
Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.
My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.