Stove-Popped Turmeric Popcorn
Looking for an alternative to buttered popcorn? Something golden, with buttery deliciousness, yet dairy-free? This gluten-free, vegan treat is one of my favorite healthy snacks... sometimes it’s even my light, late lunch ;) I probably enjoy Turmeric Popcorn two or three times a week.
It’s also a great way to get some extra turmeric in your diet. Here’s just one site that lists the many potential benefits of consuming turmeric regularly (also known as curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric).
At one point I got concerned that popcorn might be a GMO food. However, in all the research I did, I could only find sources that said it was definitely NOT a genetically-modified food. Which makes sense really; popcorn is entirely different than the corn we eat off the cob or grind into meal. Why would the BigAg companies go to a lot of trouble to make a GMO of such a small specialty crop like popcorn?
If you’ve never made popcorn on the stove, it’s very easy. The main thing is to remove the pan from the heat and empty the popped corn into your serving bowl as soon as the popping slows way down or pauses. If you hang on too long, trying to get every last kernel popped, you’ll probably burn the bottom. (Burned popcorn is inedible and will stink up the whole house!) So, err on the side of under-popped, until you get used to making popcorn on the stove top. With a little practice you’ll get the timing just right.
Where I am in Argentina you don’t see electric popcorn-makers. But now that I make it on the cooktop, I wouldn't see the point in spending money for a machine that only does one thing… one thing that I can do inexpensively myself.
If you have an electric cooktop, I’d recommend first letting the pan get hot before adding any of the ingredients. The method below uses a gas burner, which heats up really quickly.
In the past, I’ve tried using other cooking oils, such as butter and coconut oil, but neither worked nearly as well for me as the olive oil.
Lastly, turmeric can stain, so take care not to leave it on surfaces that are highly absorbent if you don’t want them to turn yellow!
The recipe below makes one very big bowl. I consider it to be one serving (for me!), or maybe enough for two as a movie-watching treat to share with my husband. The first time he tried it he asked if it was made with butter. Nope! Just olive oil, turmeric, popcorn, and salt.
How to Make Turmeric Popcorn
Start to finish this should take no more than 5 minutes.
1 teaspoon turmeric (or more, depending on the strength of your turmeric and preferred taste)
1/2 cup popcorn kernels
• Place a deep pot on the stove over high heat.
• Add a few glugs of olive oil. Enough to coat the bottom the pan. (You can do this immediately on a gas stove. Wait for the pan to heat up if using an electric cook top.)
• Drop in about 5 kernels of popcorn and cover.
• When the kernels begins to pop, drop in the tablespoon of turmeric.
• Immediately add the rest of the 1/2 cup of popcorn.
• Cover the pot. Shake and swirl to fully coat the kernels with the turmeric and oil.
• Keep the pot on the high heat and let the popcorn pop. It will start off slowly, ramp up to high speed, and gradually slow back down again. It will take about 3 minutes +/- from first pop to done.
• If your pot lid seals very tightly you might need to crack it a tiny bit to allow air in to help during the popping phase.
• As soon as the popping slows considerably, start paying close attention. At the first real pause in popping, turn the heat down or off, empty the cooked popcorn into your serving bowl, and immediately add water to the pot to help with clean up later.
Salt to taste and enjoy!
Notes on clean up- The pot will look like more of a mess than it is. Hot water, regular dish soap, and a sponge make cleanup a snap. If your fingers are yellow after eating, just wash them with soap and water (or wash the pot and bowl!)... within a few hours they’ll be back to normal.
Please feel free to leave your comments or ask questions here!
Besos from Argentina,
PS. If you like this, don't forget to share it!