Frenchified Popcorn

Frenchified Popcorn

The day after Thanksgiving always brings a ton of cooking and chef supply catalogs in the mail.  Do you get as many as I do?    I page through and admire the many “fantasy” holiday table settings, linens and cooking gadgetry and then try hard to resist the urge to purchase as they try hard to convince me that I need that crap.    I always get a kick out of what “specialty item of the season”  Chuck Williams and crew  insists I now need.

This year was no different.  So on Friday, like clockwork,  I was paging though the Williams  Sonoma, Chefs, and Sur le Table catalogues,  alternately coveting and laughing at the various goodies.

How did we ever get along without fully automatic espresso machines, milk frothers, yogurt makers, fruit dehydrators, panini presses, plug-in woks, or (seriously) electric raclette makers?

Twenty years ago the air popper popcorn maker was the new big deal.  Everyone rushed out and bought one, including me.   Just as quickly I gave it away.   Using air to pop the kernels might save a few calories but to my palate the method left lot to be desired.  If the catalogs are any indication these single use appliances are still quite popular.   Not with me.  I can’t t encourage the use of appliances that do just one thing.

Just use a pan and a small amount of oil.   Do it this way because it tastes better and unless you are eating the entire batch you don’t have to worry about the extra calories from two tablespoons of oil.  Don’t get me started on the health perils of  microwave popcorn.  That stuff is just gross when you think  about it.

I keep a Ball jar of popcorn stashed in the pantry for emergency appetizers and impromptu movie nights.   Due to a last minute change of plans  we were unplanned guests to a Thanksgiving celebration so I souped up a batch with some French herbs and garlic butter.

If you haven’t made popcorn ‘old school’ in a long time don’t worry, it is a bit like riding a bike.   Use my trick for determining when the oil is hot and then keep the pan moving to avoid burning.   Don’t try to pop the last kernel — just take the pan off a moment earlier than you want to.

One taste and you will be giving away your air popper as I did.   You just don’t need it.     Sorry Chuck.  No special equipment is necessary.

Frenchified Popcorn

Frenchified Popcorn

Frenchified Popcorn

Frenchified Popcorn

This is what you will need:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 3 tablespoons grapeseed or safflower oil
  • 1 cup popcorn kernels
  • 3 tablespoons herbes de provence
  • Fleur de Sel

This is how you make it:

  1. Melt the butter with the garlic.
  2. Remove from the heat and allow to infuse.
  3. Heat the oil in a large pot and add 4 kernels of the popcorn.
  4. Wait until the 4th kernel has popped and then add the remaining kernals, cover pot and shake/toss to coat.
  5. Shake the pot over high heat until all the kernels have popped. W
  6. hen you can hear the kernels popping very slow remove from heat. R
  7. emove the garlic from the butter and pour the butter over the popcorn to your taste.
  8. Toss well then sprinkle with the herbes de provence and the Fleur de Sel.
  9. Toss again and serve.

Frenchified Popcorn

About Trevor Kensey

To be truthful, I don't know what “Sis. Boom. [blog!]" means either. The name implies something explosive just happened I suppose I would like it if each post would make made a small 'boom' in your day or at least a fizzle. Even though a recipe is included with every post I have a hard time calling this a "food blog" or even myself a "food blogger".

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  1. This could be my dinner. Seriously.

  2. Popcorn is always good anytime. I could snack on it all day.

  3. I agree with Lizzy. I think this will be my lunch!

  4. POPCORN!!! My favorite snack of all!! Now why did chocolate just pop into my head? Must be the french in me. I enjoyed this blog just as I always enjoy all your blogs Trevor. You’re so right about all this unneeded “stuff”!
    Popcorn made the old fashioned way is THE best! I’ve also used these french herbs on my popcorn as well as many other dishes. It adds pizzaz! I’ve made popcorn so many different ways and YES, I’ve added chocolate to it. I’ll admit to it, the darker chocolate the better!! hahaha! Mon doux! I couldn’t help myself!
    C. Beaudoin

  5. I just made popcorn the other night– totally agree that made on the stove with oil is delicious. I will definitely try the garlic! I also enjoy just a touch of hot chili oil added to the kernels.

  6. You are SO right – this is the only way to make popcorn. Who wants it all “dry?” Not me! And I agree about the pointlessness of single-use appliances (mostly). But in all seriousness … that garlic butter … so nice. I am with Lizzy: I could eat this for my dinner.

  7. Well, I blame commercialism. I thought you had to have a special pan/contraption/thingy to make stove top popcorn. Duh, I feel like such a fool. This sounds completely amazing. So going to give it a try.

  8. Neil Cowan says:

    I believe (Je crois que…) that it is ‘Fleur de Sel’, or ‘flower of the salt’; referring to the top scum that the nuns gather in their wimples…. Ask Chris; he’s the expert in la langue francais!

  9. yum. i always use coconut oil for my popcorn now – tastes like the movies!

  10. How wonderful! I haven’t made “real” popcorn in years – but I do have a nice scar from where the lid flipped over & splattered my hand with oil! LOL!

    I have a hard time resisting Kettle Corn at the Farmers’ Market, too.

  11. Thank you for adding additional seasonings like Sel de Fleur and garlic! I made the mistake of watching Sandra Lee over the weekend and she kept making “French” food just by adding only herbes de provence. I wanted to strangle her.

  12. I go through the same problem with catalogs each year and do my best to hold back from purchasing stuff I can do without. I love your post on “old-school” popcorn plus your Fleur de Sel is wonderful!

  13. Well seasoned popcorn is always a welcome snack in this house and I like to cook it the old way!
    Today we are so caught up in all the “easy fix” gadgets. I bet there are at least 50 or more out there and all of us have been rooked into buying at least one. I think the worst is the hot dog maker!

  14. wow…healthy n tasty to munch on watching rain now..
    just found your space…awesome space you hve with lovely recipe collection..
    stunning cliks..
    Am your happy follower now..;)
    do stop by mine sometime.
    Tasty Appetite

  15. Love it. We popped popcorn in an old cast iron kettle belonging to my great grandmother for my entire childhood. air poppers are gone, but the kettle is still popping.