Recipe: Sweet Seaweed Popcorn

29 May

Seaweed might not be the first thing you think of when contemplating seasoning for popcorn, but the flavor is fantastic and it has the extra benefit of being really healthy. Toasted nori, or seaweed, is a main ingredient in a dried Japanese seasoning mix called furikake. Normally it is used as a condiment over rice or noodles, and sometimes contains fish flakes or wasabi. The kind I used here is a simple mix of seaweed, toasted sesame seeds, salt and sugar and is very mild. Once you combine this seasoning with the popcorn and other ingredients it takes on a deep, lovely flavor that is addicting. It’s simple to make and healthier than most microwave popcorn, too. As always, I’d love to hear from you if you try it. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons oil – I like peanut, olive, or coconut
  • spray oil, either olive or butter ‘flavor’ if that’s your thing
  • 1/2 cup corn kernels
  • nori furikake – widely available in the “Asian” section of your grocery store, also available online
  • drizzle of honey
  • scattering of salt

Method:

1. Make the popcorn.

- Add the oil to a large stockpot with a lid. Add the corn kernels and salt and shake to coat.

- Place the lid on the pot and turn your stove to medium heat.

- Once the kernels start popping I let them go about five minutes. Don’t get distracted while making almond-orange creamsicles for your toddler or the bottom layer will burn. Remove from heat.

2. Add the seasoning.

- At this point I seasoned the popcorn bowl by bowl, because it really needs to be eaten immediately. If you plan on sneaking this into the movies or sharing with a bunch of friends, you can do the whole batch at once, but either is fine.

- First, coat your popcorn with spray oil. You can always use melted butter, and I don’t deny that would be delicious, but I am lazy and this was a much simpler option. I used a mild olive oil spray.

- Next, generously sprinkle the furikake over the popcorn. I did this by sight and it’s practically impossible to get wrong, so don’t worry about it. Just add enough to where it looks well-coated by the green flecks of nori.

- Lastly, drizzle over the honey. To avoid large, sticky clumps, hold your honey spoon or bottle way up high so you can control where the thin line of honey falls.Zig zag it over the bowl, tossing the popcorn once or twice.

- Taste for seasoning. No one flavor should overpower another. You should get the hit of the salt, the sweet of the honey, and the umami resonance of the nori all at once. The sum flavors of the whole is greater than those of its parts. Adjust if necessary.

Isobel wanted nothing to do with this strange concoction at first, but once she finally consented to taste it she was hooked. Remember what I said about not wanting to make the whole batch? Screw it. Make the whole batch. You’ll have to force yourself not to eat it in a sitting.

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5 Responses to “Recipe: Sweet Seaweed Popcorn”

  1. Van May 29, 2012 at 8:10 am #

    I’ve got pals coming over for drawing night who LOVE my popcorn. Definitely going to try it with the furikake flakes I’ve got in the cabinet ;) Sounds so very umami and delicious.
    Van recently posted..What I Didn’t Buy at the Thrift Store: Flea Market EditionMy Profile

    • Carrie Anne June 18, 2012 at 12:37 pm #

      I’d love to hear how the popcorn went over!

  2. Christy February 23, 2013 at 2:44 pm #

    Do you think you could bake this after drizzling with the honey to keep it from getting soggy? We’d like to serve this at a party.

    • Carrie Anne February 24, 2013 at 9:58 am #

      Interesting question! I really am not sure about this. What you might want to do is combine this recipe into one for popcorn balls, but make the balls golf ball-sized so they would be appetizer-sized. Let me know if the baking them works!

      • Christy February 27, 2013 at 10:10 am #

        I just went ahead and baked it for about ten minutes at 350 and it was perfect! No stickiness. I think in a sealed bag, it will stay good and crunchy for a while. I might even reheat it before I serve it in the oven just to get it warm.

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