Dad made a total of two dishes while we were growing up.
scrambled eggs & salami
When we’d hear him shifting the pots and pans around in the bottom of the cabinet to find the heavy bottomed stock pot and lid, we knew we were in for a treat. Out came the oil, kernels and salt. The sound of bottom of the pot being vigorously shaken back and forth over the burners of the stove top was deafening. He’d scoop the hot popcorn into brown paper lunch bags and write our names on them to ensure we ate out of only our own bag. We’d then jump into the family station wagon with blankets and sleeping bags in tow for our evening at the drive-in movie theater.
When the time came, I introduced Ben to air-popped popcorn. It was my go-to for years-no salt, no butter and just a bit of Parmesean. My husband said it tasted like styrofoam. Ben ate it steadily for a while, but quickly became averse to it once he tasted movie theater popcorn. Since we see a lot of movies, theater popcorn was quickly becoming a staple in his diet. Let’s face it. Movie theater popcorn isn’t the best of choices, but it’s not the worst, either.
Striking a balance between my styrofoam air popped and the artificial ingredient-ladened movie theater style popcorn varieties became my mission. It was a simple solution, really. Back to old school-Dad-style on the stove popcorn.
Stove Top Popcorn
1 T corn oil
1 cup kernels
Light sprinkling of salt
- In a large, heavy bottomed pot (think stock pot), add corn oil (while pot is still cold) and heat over medium heat. Add corn kernels. Shake to ensure an even, coated layer of kernels. Continue shaking every 30 seconds. Corn will begin to pop after about 3 minutes. Add lid to pot and continue to shake every 30 seconds. When popping slows, remove from heat immediately. Salt to taste. Once cooled, store in an airtight container or large plastic sealable bag.
This popcorn finds it’s way into backpacks, lunches, the glovebox and yes, the movie theater.