I’m admitting up front – this is a short cut popcorn. As in – food finds at Trader Joe’s can instantly punch up an old standby recipe, or in this case a snack staple at my house. Snack staple = stovetop popcorn. Trader Joe’s food find = Thai Lime & Chili Cashews.
Now a quick word about popping oil. My fellow RD colleagues and ReDux members, Janel of Eat Well With Janel & Nicole of Whole Health RD, have raved about popping corn in virgin coconut oil so I finally bought some and tried it out. The aroma is amazing and the flavor is undeniable. Now the health jury is still out on coconut oil. It’s high in saturated fat but its ratio of short & medium-chain fatty acids have shown, in some studies, a positive effect on HDL cholesterol, the cholesterol that’s actually protective of our hearts. Either way, I’m OK with using a minimal amount of the extra virgin coconut oil (the hydrogenated version is definitely the kind to avoid).
I’ve posted my basic popcorn recipe with variations before. And I’ve also used these delightful cashews in my Mango Coconut Rice with Candied Ginger. But the other night, rather than shaking in the usual sea salt into the usual popcorn, I reached for the cashews and added in some dried cherries for kicks. The result at first handful? A burst of spicy, salty, fruity, sweet and crunchy – the ultimate sensations sought in snacking.
What’s your favorite way to make/eat popcorn?