Here's a fun recipe I learned from Paulette and the Harry Potter party: Sweet and salty and oh-so-simple chocolate popcorn. With so many colors of chocolate melts, you can make chocolate covered popcorn in any color of the rainbow. For the Harry Potter party, we made green chocolate popcorn, put it in a plastic cauldron, and called them Troll Bogeys (or boogers, as they're known here in the USA).
Ingredients for Chocolate Covered Popcorn:
- Chocolate (the candy melts variety is fine, doesn't need tempering, and comes in a rainbow of colors)
- Salt, if desired
First, pop the popcorn. I just used microwave popcorn, mostly because I have an electric stove, and can't make stovetop popcorn on an electric stove to save my life. I make popcorn in the microwave with no added oil or other questionable ingredients using my beloved Nordicware microwave popcorn popper. Just put popcorn kernels in the bowl, but on the lid, and hit the popcorn button on your microwave.
Be sure you pick out all of the unpopped kernels, and put the popcorn in a large bowl. Ideally, the popcorn should only fill half of the bowl.
Next melt your chocolates. I use disks of candy melts I get from my local cake decorating store, but Wilton makes them, too, and they're widely available in craft stores in a rainbow of colors.
Chocolate Melting Tips:
- Be aware that the disks won't necessarily have melted into a puddle when they're ready. No, they hold their shape but look shiny when they're melted. Look for the shine and give it an experimental poke with your spatula to see if the candy is sufficiently soft.
- Some colors of chocolate melts seem to melt a lot better than others. I have terrible luck with oranges, for example. So if you're having trouble with a particular color, add a tiny bit of oil to help it smooth out and melt nicely.
If you still have some solid chunks, throw it back in the microwave, checking every 15 seconds or so. You don't want to microwave for too long! And remember that water is your enemy when working with chocolate, so be sure that your bowl and spatula are perfectly dry before starting.
Next, it's time to mix. Just dollop the melted chocolate on top of the popcorn, and toss, just like you would a salad.
Sprinkle with salt, if desired. I always desire salt. That sweet and salty combination is just so good.
Once the popcorn is completely coated, spread the popcorn on a baking sheet (as close to a single layer as you can get) and throw it in the fridge to solidify the melted chocolate quickly. Once it has hardened, take the popcorn out of the fridge, break apart into smaller pieces if necessary, and store at room temperature.
Chocolate Covered Popcorn Tips:
- Chocolate covered popcorn can be made several days in advance, because the chocolate coating helps to keep the popcorn from going stale.
- Since you can make it in any color, it's the perfect addition to a dessert table, and makes fabulous homemade wedding favors or an addition to goodie bags for parties or for out of town guests.
- Try customizing the flavors by throwing in peanuts or mini marshmallows (or both! Rocky Road Popcorn!), or other mix-ins.