Monday, October 04, 2010

It's National Popcorn Month!

Did you know? How are YOU going to celebrate?

Sure it's a moviewatching staple. But it's also gaining popularity as a healthy snack. (Air-popped...hold the butter and salt.) Whatver the occasion, Americans eat almost 16 billion quarts of the stuff a year.

And, yes, I like mine with butter and satl, but there are other interesting flavors to try. Here are several seasoning blends I had out for last year's Academy Awards party. Guests could scoop up the popcorn, spray on a little olive oil or butter and season to their heart's delight.

2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
2 tablespoons salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 pinch cayenne pepper, (optional)

1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
2 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon ground cumin

1/4 cup finely grated (about 1/2 ounce) Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon crushed red-pepper flakes, (optional)

1 tablespoon curry powder
2 tablespoons salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 pinch cayenne pepper

For each of these mixtures, simply place all of the ingredients in a medium bowl; stir until they are combined, and transfer to an airtight container for storage. All of the variations can be doubled or tripled, depending on the size of the container you plan to use. The Italian mixture should be kept in the refrigerator, as it contains fresh cheese. Season popcorn to taste.

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