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Spiced Maple Popcorn Snack Mix

April 28, 2015 | By | Reply More

Maple popcorn snack mix

“Ughmahgahd….I am in BIG trouble,” I mumbled as Mr. President walked into the kitchen and caught me scraping and licking the spicy sweet goo left in the bowl after this snack mix went into the oven. And I was – in big, big trouble. I love maple syrup. And that’s why I found myself shoveling handfuls of this maple popcorn snack mix down my throat later that same evening. I just couldn’t stop.

Among other kinds of snobbery (bean snobbery, tomato snobbery…), I am a maple syrup snob. I won’t touch the fake stuff. Most restaurants don’t serve real maple syrup, so I won’t get the pancakes or the Belgian waffle. I make those things at home and drizzle on the good stuff, grade B.

Maple sugar season begins in late winter and continues into April in many parts of the New England. It takes nearly 40 gallons of sap to produce just one gallon of syrup. One day, I’d love to take part in this tradition by visiting some maple sugar shacks myself and toting home some real maple syrup. It’s on my bucket list. In the meantime, I buy wonderful local maple syrup at my farmer’s market or, in a pinch, my local grocery.

Maple popcorn snack mix

Humble popcorn, destined for greatness

I found this recipe online at Bon Appetit and knew immediately that I had to try it. I knew the mix of spicy, salty and sweet would be a winner. Most commercial snack mixes have lots of additives, and making this homemade one means you can be choosy about your ingredients – I used organic, non-gmo popcorn, grade B maple syrup, and organic raisins. If there’s one bad thing about this maple popcorn snack mix – and this is a stretch – the raisins  and pecans sink to the bottom of the bowl no matter how well you combine the ingredients. To get the perfect bite, make sure to excavate a few raisins and nuts to go with your popcorn.

Ingredients (Serves 8 normal people, or just 2 maple addicts)

5 cups popped popcorn, from roughly 1/3 to 1/2 cup unpopped kernels

2 cups pecan halves

2 Tbsp. virgin coconut oil

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 tsp. kosher salt

1 tsp. paprika

1 tsp. turmeric

1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp. ground ginger

1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg

2 Tbsp. pure maple syrup

1 cup golden raisins

maple popcorn snack mixPreheat oven to 300°. Toss the popcorn with the pecans in a large bowl.

Melt coconut oil in a small skillet and stir in all spices and cook for 30 seconds. Turn off the heat and stir in the maple syrup.  Drizzle mixture over popcorn and pecans and stir gently to combine. Spread mixture in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Toast in oven for about 30 minutes.

Return mixture to a large bowl, stir in raisins and serve. Or just inhale until it’s all gone.


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Category: Desserts, General, Recipes, Spring

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