I'm pretty sure Steve Jobs was sitting behind me one summer's day at the beach. I should explain. Many years ago I sat on the beach with Mr NQN and said to him "I want a phone that can play music, take photos and access the internet."
Mr NQN is a glass half empty kind of guy and he said "That won't ever happen."
OK I was half joking about Steve Jobs sitting behind me, I'm sure the idea occurred to loads of people over the years and I was but one of the many. But a part of me has always wished that I had invented _something. _Well something useful at least...
One invention that became very popular over the years was microwave popcorn-it was huge when I was a teenager and we used to eat bags of the stuff at sleepovers. I guess it came about as people got sick of burning their popcorn kernels in a pot and people wanted a quick, neat way of air popping their popcorn in that new fangled contraption called a microwave-yes I remember life before one but only just. So microwave popcorn was invented and that meant that you could make popcorn in minutes without having to wash a pot.
What they didn't tell you is that all you need to make microwave popcorn yourself is a paper bag and some popping corn (well and a microwave but you knew that, right? ;) ). For 31cents instead of $2 for 100g of popping corn, you can make batch after batch your very own air popped microwave popcorn at home or at work! You can also top it with proper butter or oil rather than that mysterious stuff they call butter. You can give it a sprinkling of salt for a crunchy, low fat late night snack or top it with a flavoured sugar for an afternoon's sugar rush at work. And I'm going to show you how!
Garlic butter...heaven on popcorn!
So tell me Dear Reader, what do you wish you had invented? And what is your favourite popcorn flavour? Classic butter and salt? Or something sweet? Mine is garlic butter for savoury as I love garlic bread but it's so calorific and caramel toffee nut popcorn for sweet!
Make Your Own Microwave Buttered Popcorn in 2 Minutes!
190 calories for 1/4 cup unpopped popcorn plus 111 calories for 1 tablespoon of butter
1/4 cup/50g/1.7ozs of popping corn
1 tablespoon/15g/1/2 oz garlic butter, melted (I used some Patrice Newell garlic and Pepe Saya butter,that was sent to me)
a pinch of salt
You will also need a brown paper bag (a 20 x 26cm lunch bag is fine) and a microwave oven
Hehe you really don't need a picture of this do you? ;)
Step 1 - Place the 1/4 cup of popping corn in the paper bag and close the bag by folding the top over two or three times.
Step 2 - Put the bag in the microwave and cook at 100% power for 90 seconds to 2 minutes. The smell of burning microwave popcorn is akin to what I'd imagine hell smells like (except possibly less sulfurous) so watch to check that it doesn't burn. My microwave which is medium strength only takes 90 seconds to pop 1/4 of a cup. I once smelled a microwave that had gone rogue with popping corn and haven't been brave enough to go the full 2 minutes.
Step 3 - Open the bag carefully (I find that it's not too hot but one or two kernels might still be popping) and then drizzle with the melted garlic butter and salt and shake in the bag to distribute. Sit back and watch your favourite show secure in the knowledge that it only takes a couple of minutes to make another bag! ;)
If you use any of the flavourings below, I'd suggest adding a splash of oil to the bag and shaking it around before putting the paper bag in the microwave and cooking it. The oil helps the dry ingredients to adhere to the popcorn kernels as they are quite dry otherwise.
Classic butter and salt
Donut popcorn (add 2 tablespoons cinnamon sugar)
Vanilla popcorn (add 2 tablespoons vanilla sugar)
Any of your favourite spicy seasonings
Finely grated reggiano cheese