Popcorn Treat

This is THE BEST sweet treat I have cooked in Ghana. Maybe that’s not saying much, because the only other sweet treat I’ve made is Candied Peanuts and they were delicious.  But this sweet popcorn treat takes just a few minutes and tastes heavenly. 

Thanks to my friends Debbie and Scott who sent me popcorn kernels, I have made small batches of popcorn at regular intervals. Today I wanted something sweet. And quick. With ingredients I had on hand. I found several peanut butter popcorn recipes on the internet. 

Most gooey popcorn recipes call for corn syrup which (thanks to Larry and Cat) is on its way to Ghana.  I needed a recipe without corn syrup. I found several options and combined them to create:

Groundnut Paste and Honey Popcorn
Easy. Delicious.
8 cups popped corn
½ cup honey
½ cup sugar
½ cup groundnut paste (peanut butter)
½ teaspoon vanilla

Use 1/4 – 1/3 popcorn kernels and oil to pop corn kernels or use microwave popcorn (low-fat, low-salt would be perfect) to make 8 cups popped corn.  You could lightly salt the popcorn, but it’s not necessary. Remove any unpopped kernals to avoid a trip to the local dentist!  Place popped corn in large bowl.  (Recipes say you can also use a large paper bag, but I don’t have any paper bags.)

In a small saucepan, combine honey and sugar. Bring to boil. Lower heat and simmer for 2 minutes. Add groundnut paste and stir until melted. Remove from heat and mix in vanilla – which could be considered optional.

Immediately pour over popcorn and stir (or shake in large paper bag). 

Cool 10 minutes and enjoy! 

The recipes say this is best if eaten shortly after cooking – when it’s gooey – and suggest throwing any leftovers in the microwave on 15-second bursts to return it to that just-cooked gooey consistency. You could also form it into popcorn balls; golf-ball size balls coated in chopped nuts or grated coconut would be awesome.

The recipe officially makes eight one-cup servings. I double-dog dare you to eat just a single cup.  Or if you do, don’t brag to me about it. Cuz I have the braggin’ rights for how many cups I ate in less than 30 minutes.

This would be a great afternoon snack or to give as a hostess gift.  I plan to make a batch to give to my counterpart. I will have to make it just before he arrives for a visit so I don’t consume the whole batch before he sees it.

Note: Sharing this recipe is part of the cultural exchange portion of my role as a Peace Corps Volunteer.  If you make this recipe with your friends, please keep the name “Groundnut Paste & Honey Popcorn” so the cultural learning will continue.  A little spice would be a nice addition, too.  Maybe I’ll buy one of those little packages of groundnut paste with pepper to try in the next batch.

Happy cooking.  Happy snacking. Happy learning about Ghanaian culture.



5 Responses to Popcorn Treat

  1. Pingback: New Taste Treat | Peace Corps – Ghana

  2. vallerie says:

    can’t wait to give this a try. do you make your own nut paste?

    • lsmittle says:

      Valerie, I roast my own groundnuts, but I buy the groundnut paste. Since most groundnut paste is added to stews, hot peppersare included like US manufacturers might include salt. The woman I buy dried beans and tomatoes from sells the spicy groundnut paste. I took her an empty jar last week and she filled it with custom-made groundnut paste without peppers.

  3. bill carter says:

    When are they gonna invent something really useful like oh…I don’t know…smell and taste via email???

    • lsmittle says:

      I love your sense of humor, Bill.

      Will you please post the email you sent (as a TV / radio reporter) on my blog? Or do you mind if I post it? Very clever!

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