New twists: Popcorn toppings

Popcorn toppings

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By Mari Taketa

Popcorn rut got you down? Tired of opening your microwaved pouch for the same synthetically flavored drudgery you’ve been popping for years?

Not to worry — serendipity sends Nonstop to your rescue. It’s our job to dream up new heights of popcorn bliss, or so we tell ourselves, and then test our ideas to see if they meet our discerning standards.

So anyway, that’s what we did. We’re happy to report that after about a dozen experiments, our taste-testing lab produced six topping combos ranging from yum to killer. We did sweet, we did salty, we did sweet-salty … which pretty much covers it.

Before you click on for the results, you should know that while it’s OK to dig out the microwave bags, you’ll get far better results for the sweet versions from popping your own. If you don’t have a popcorn popper, here’s what you do:

1. Go to the store and get some vegetable oil and unpopped popcorn (comes in a jar or a bag like marshmallows).

2. Go home, turn the stove on medium and heat a few tablespoons of oil in a pot with a lid.

3. Cover the bottom of the pot with about a half-cup of unpopped corn and set the lid over most of the pot.

4. When the corn starts to pop, gently shake the pot on the burner to keep the kernels moving.

5. As soon as the popping slows to once every few seconds, turn off the stove and pour the popped corn into a bowl.

6. Use the residual heat of the pot to melt your butter and drizzle over hot popcorn.

How easy is that? Now click on for our yummy new twists on popcorn toppings.