Nothing compares to fresh "Quality" homemade popcorn; you know what's in it!
I was tired of the popcorn that I was consuming, and recently discovered an excellent resource for popcorn kernels (see below for the varieties from one company that I recently tried). I do not have a relationship with the popcorn company or Smart Balance, other than being a consumer. I will show you what the grains look like uncooked and cooked, right after they are popped (microwave method used.)
Yield 2.5-3 cups popped per one- quarter cup fresh kernels (3 cups of popped corn are about a serving size) that equals to about 100 calories (give or take) without the oil! Each 4 oz bag from this popcorn company will yield near to three servings.
Stovetop Directions: 1/4 cup kernels, 1 Tablespoon of Smart Balance Oil and a pinch of salt for cooking. Heat oil on medium, add the salt (a tiny pinch!) two kernels and cover. Add the rest of the kernels when a first one pops, and keep shaking your covered pot every minute or so until popping stops (use pot holders if you need them). It will all be popped in a few minutes once the first kernel pops (I used a large pot with a glass vented lid) Remove from heat when popping stops. If you like it salty or buttery, add those ingredients after popping and toss.
Microwave Directions: Use a microwave popper dish w/lid. 1/4 cup kernels, 1 Tablespoon of Smart Balance Oil and a pinch of salt for cooking. Pop 3.5 minutes (test the time for your microwave). The microwave method will have more unpopped kernels compared to the stovetop even if you figure out the timing!
Smart Balance Oil Label
The company selectpopcorn.com has a variety of corn kernels. I could not decide which one to try, so I ordered the samples (2 dozen = 8 oz of each kernel, in 4oz packages). I was surprised when I ended up saving on shipping cost by navigating my way to a flat rate shipping, saved a few dollars just before checking out! They were shipped in one parcel. Since the sample order contains two of each packaged kernels, it is a good idea to gift the duplicate or share the order with a friend because it is plenty!
As you can see they all arrived fresh and packaged well.
Pink Blossom is noted to be the healthiest kernels that Riehle's grows. It contains more antioxidant properties than yellow (anthocyanin and cyanidin). Some of the corn pops tiny. The popcorn has a soft, moist, quick dissolving crisp with a long lasting chewy texture (from the hull/shell) in the end with only a few unpopped kernels remaining.
Shaman Blue is crunchy! from the beginning to the end, but not dry tasting! Only a few unpopped kernels remained. Be careful that you do not chew too hard on your handfuls, the hull is CRUNCHY! Fairly consistent in popped size. A few popped tiny.
Baby White Hulless has a nice delicate crisp, easy to eat and swallow and no hulls left over:) Only a few kernels were left unpopped. The popcorn pops small (not tiny) and is more consistent in size.
Baby Yellow Hulless popped in a variety of sizes. There were a little kernels leftover. Since they are cooked in a microwave, it is expected that some kernels will not pop; for the sake of preventing burnt popcorn, I remove it when there is hardly any popping. Taste a little sweet, naturally!
Baby Blue Hulless pops fairly consistent with a few smaller sizes. This one is not too moist or dry; it taste like a blue corn chip, but is very white. :) It is crunchy with some chewy pieces that linger in the mouth towards the end:) A few unpopped kernels remained.
Autumn Blaze Hulless pops in different sizes and some tiny cute pops. It has a slight butter flavor. Crispy and crunchy. Some unpopped kernels remained.
Midnight Red pops consistent, not many different sizes. This one is crunchy and has a slight dry nutty flavor. Only a few did not pop.
Sunburst pops consistently. It is mostly crisp, but it has some crunch to a few of the pops. Easy to eat! Has a movie popcorn quality. Naturally a little moist. Not many unpopped kernels.
Goldenrod Pops up LARGE and consistent. 1/4 cup kernels made nearly four cups instead of the usual three. A few left over unpopped kernels. It has a light crisp then dissolves quickly. Some chewiness with only a few crunchy to hard hulls. The hulls are large. Reminds me of movie popcorn.
Ruby Red is known to be one of the healthier kernels too (like Pink Blossom) with more antioxidant properties (anthocyanin and cyanidin) compared to yellow corn. It pops in different sizes with some left over unpopped kernels remaining. It has a crispy- crackly and crunchy texture with a slight earthy, dry nutty flavor.
Pearl White mostly pops consistent in size (most yellow corn varieties seem a bit larger and sweeter in general) with only a few unpopped kernels leftover. It has a soft, quick dissolving moist crisp. A few chewy bits linger in the mouth (not hard). Almost a movie type popcorn.
Rainbow Delight is the end of my samples. They pop into white and yellow. Some are moist with a hint of natural butter flavor (or sweet), and some are dry but lots of corn flavor. Both are crispy, and the yellow dissolves faster. They pop in different sizes. As usual, some unpopped kernels remained.
That's It! I hope you get a chance to try them all too!
I think my favorite kernel is the Baby White!
Side by side shots.
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