“Good Eating in Kansas” is a cookbook from the Emporia Club of the Telephone Pioneers of America. The Telephone Pioneers organization dates back to 1911, and was formed by those who were retiring from the first generation of telephone providers.
A few weeks back we looked at an amazing variety of recipes involving canned tuna. Today, it’s a little corny.
Popcorn recipes were tucked in toward the end of the cookbook. Here are three that sound good.
If you missed the first edition, this book dates from 1978, was a project headed by fundraising chairman Faye Jaggard, and includes a majority of recipes from women in Emporia at the time along with submissions from across the state.
This first one is similar to one my mother would make, mostly at Halloween or Christmas, because you could “color” the popcorn for the occasion. She would use Karo syrup instead of the butter and marshmallows and put food coloring in that. Orange for Halloween, red or green for Christmas.
With all the colors of the rainbow available in gelatin these days, you could use these for your graduation party, birthday, sporting event — even a baby reveal party if you promise to have no explosives in the vicinity. That’s just asking for trouble.
MARSHMALLOW POPCORN BALLS
6 Tablespoons butter
3 cups tiny marshmallows
1/2 of 3-ounce flavored Jell-O (3 Tablespoons)
3 quarts popped corn
Melt butter and add marshmallows. Stir until melted. Add Jell-O, then pour over popcorn.
The directions should add: butter your hands and quickly shape popcorn into balls. Place on waxed paper to cool. These days we have culinary gloves that could also serve as a heat protector.
OLD-FASHIONED DARK POPCORN GLAZE
3/4 cup dark molasses
1 1/2 cup brown sugar
1 Tablespoon vinegar
1/2 cup butter (or margarine)
1/2 teaspoon salt
Combine all in a saucepan and heat to 280 degrees, stirring frequently. Pour over popcorn and mix thoroughly.
This recipe doesn’t say how much popcorn you need but judging by others I estimate a good 12 cups once popped.
I would add that you then need to spread the popcorn out on some waxed paper (or parchment), give those coated kernels some space and air to set up, then store in an airtight container, if it lasts long enough to be stored. Of course, you can shape it onto balls, too!
Finally, here is the classic caramel corn, perfect for the Fourth of July. I added modern translations for the ingredients. Let’s get cooking and have a ball!
5 quarts popped corn
2 cups brown sugar
2 sticks oleo (margarine)
1/2 teaspoon soda (baking soda)
1/2 cup white syrup (corn syrup, such as Karo)
1 teaspoon salt
Keep the popped corn in a 250-degree oven until syrup is ready to pour over it.
Bring sugar, syrup, oleo and salt to a rolling boil; boil 5 minutes. Remove from heat, add soda.
Pour over popped corn in big pan, put in oven and stir every 15 minutes for 45 - 50 minutes. Cool and serve. If desired, 1 cup peanuts maybe added.