Friday, October 07, 2005

Pumpkin Seed Popcorn Balls

I'm feeling all harvest-y. Weather here is seesawing between misty/rainy and sunny/cool. The tomatoes have given up the ghost and as we were going to story time, the kids and I saw two big trucks full of pumpkins headed up island. So exploring treats for Halloween I've decided to bodge together a couple of recipes: popcorn balls and candied pumpkin seeds.

2 cups of raw pumpkin seeds
1 large egg white
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp vanilla

Lightly beat egg white and vanilla together. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper, Preheat oven to 350. In large bowl add egg white to seeds until just coated. Add sugar and toss. Spread seeds on sheet toast for 10 minutes. Stir and separate then continue toasting until light golden brown. Let cool.

9 cups popped popcorn
1 cup sugar

1/2 cup water

1/4 cup light-colored corn syrup

1/2 teaspoon vinegar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Remove all unpopped kernels from popped popcorn. Put popcorn in a greased baking pan. Keep popcorn warm in a 300 oven while making syrup.For syrup mixture, butter the sides of a heavy 2-quart saucepan. In saucepan combine sugar, water, corn syrup, vinegar, and salt. Cook and stir over medium-high heat till mixture boils, stirring to dissolve the sugar (about 6 minutes). Clip a candy thermometer to the side of the saucepan. Reduce heat to medium, boiling at a moderate, steady rate, stirring occasionally, till thermometer reaches 250 (about 20 minutes). Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla. Pour syrup mixture over hot popcorn and stir gently to coat. Cool till the popcorn mixture can be handled easily. Mix in pumpkin seeds. Buttered hands and shape the mixture into 3-inch diameter balls. Wrap each ball in plastic wrap. Yield about 10 popcorn balls.

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