Why is it that you can get caramel popcorn when you go to the theatre but not chocolate popcorn? Are we missing something? Caramel may be golden and alluring but who or what can compare to the dark and mysterious charms of chocolate?
We want chocolate popcorn!
‘Pop, pop, pop’
Popcorn is a fun food to make. Place a bag of it in your microwave and soon you’ll hear the gentle hum of steady popping sounds coming from inside. Wait a little longer and the popping is now a little faster. The buttery smell of the snack fills your whole kitchen.
In his book, The Blood of Olympus, author Rick Riordan wrote the following line for one of his characters:
“Oh, no!” Hazel wailed. “Popcorn! Our fatal weakness!”
That may just have been a description of mankind’s reaction to this mouthwatering snack.
When did the first kernel pop?
Watching a movie isn’t nearly as fun unless you have a large tub of popcorn in front of you to munch on. It’s an essential part of the experience. Even when you’re curled up on the couch and watching a movie at home, popcorn is normally always at most an arm’s length away.
But who was it that thought to pop corn kernels to see what happened?
Popcorn, also referred to as popping corn, comes from a particular variety of maize that produces small kernels. The kernels contain a small amount of water. To get the kernel to turn into fluffy popcorn, it is heated and the water inside turns to steam. When the pressure builds, the outer shell bursts and releases the soft inner flake. And there you have it: popcorn as we know it!
The name ‘popcorn’ was given to this snack due to the noise the kernel made as it burst open. The corn literally popped!
It is believed that around 1612, French explorers around the Great Lakes met Iroquois Indians who used heated sand in a pottery vessel to make popcorn. There is also an unproven legend that an Indian named Quadequina brought a deerskin bag of popped corn for first Thanksgiving feast on October 15, 1621.
The first popcorn machine was invented in 1885 by Charles Cretorsin Chicago. Soon after, street vendors were pushing steam or gas-powered poppers through fairs, parks, and expositions. Popcorn machines were also installed in movie theaters. During the Great Depression, popcorn prices remained relatively low and its sales skyrocketed during this time. It was a snack that everyone could still afford and enjoy.
All good things need a little embellishment now and then. Popcorn is no different. Today, you can find an incredible variety of popcorn flavors. It should come as no surprise that chocolate popcorn is one of them!
Chocolate popcorn come in a number of varieties:
- Like caramel popcorn, you can have popcorn with a chocolate glaze
- Chocolate can be drizzled over popcorn
- Popcorn can be dipped and coated in chocolate
Some gourmet varieties of the treat include:
- Popcorn drizzled with a mixture of dark, milk and white chocolate with pieces of nuts
- Chocolate and caramel popcorn
- Dark chocolate and sea salt popcorn
- S’mores popcorn
- Dark chocolate and cherry popcorn
The next time you’re getting ready to watch a movie, skip the traditional salted butter popcorn in favor of sweet and salty chocolate popcorn. You won’t be disappointed with this gourmet snack!