In preparation for Halloween night, my mom would gather us and we would make popcorn balls to hand out for goodies.
1 cup sugar
1 cup light corn syrup (or 1 cup maple syrup)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ginger
1/8 tsp mace or allspice
1 T butter
1/2 cup water
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp almond extract
3 quarts crisp salted popped corn
1 1/2 cups chopped mixed nuts
Combine sugars, salt spices, butter and water in saucepan,. Cook over low heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Wash crystals from side of the pan. Cook over medium heat to 245 degrees on a candy thermometer – firm ball stage. Remove from heat; stir in extracts. Pour slowly over mixture of popped corn and nuts, stirring to mix well. Sharpe iwth buttered hands, into balls. Makes about 2 dozen balls, 2 inches in diameter.
Holiday Popcorn Balls: add 1/2 candied cherries (red and green)
Crunchy Popcorn Balls: The above recipe makes chewy popcorn balls. If you want crunchy popcorn balls, use only 2 quarts of popcorn and heat the sugar mixture to 290 degrees. Pour over popcorn and nuts, spread in thin layer on buttered aluminum foil and break into pieces when cooled.
Popcorn on a Stick: Form the popcorn balls on a stick. You can even drizzle carmel and/or chocolate around them to make them even better!
Toffee Popcorn Balls: Take your chewy popcorn balls and dip in the top third in milk chocolate topping and then sprinkle with broken heath bar!
Snowman Popcorn Balls: Make a smaller and set it on top of the larger ball to cool. Decorate with a mint for a hat, and add different candies to decorate to look like a snowman.