The courtyard

To get to our house, you must make a right off the main drag.  Just after the right hand turn, on the south end of our street is a small grouping of cute little bungalows and duplex’s.  One such duplex has just had a cute little courtyard installed, and in that courtyard is a set of chairs and a table.  Most weekends, you can find the duplex neighbors chatting over a glass of wine in that little courtyard.  Last friday, we drove by and noticed it was one such night.

Once we got home, Alisha had texted us to invite us to come down and have some wine.  So, unable to resist an impromptu neighborhood get together, we headed back down south to that cute little courtyard on our bikes.  Surrounded by wine glasses, in the middle of the table sat a bowl of popcorn.  Someone asked if it was microwave?  No.  Air popped? No.  This was the real deal, cooked on the stove, popcorn.  John had made it and it was almost gone.  I asked if he had ever done kettle corn.  His eyebrow lifted a little… why no, he had not.  But he was intrigued.  Into the kitchen he went, challenged by this new culinary adventure.  In went the oil, and then popcorn and sugar.  He closed the lid, and shook the pan.  Two minutes later, the lid began to lift as the popcorn overflowed from the pan.  Success- golden caramelized goodness.  Never. Microwave. Again.

How to be Neighborly: Experiment together.

Kettle CornIMG_2324

  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
  •  2 Tbsp butter
  •  1/2 c popcorn kernels (unpopped)
  •  3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fine salt

Heat the oil in a large heavy-bottomed dutch oven pot over medium heat. Place a couple of kernels of popcorn in the pan. When the kernels pop, add the butter and stir into the oil to prevent burning. Immediately add the popcorn and stir. Add the sugar and salt right away and stir again. Cover the pan, and start shaking it gently back and forth on the burner. Keep shaking as the popcorn pops, using a towel to hold the handle to prevent burning.

Once you start hearing 1 or 2 seconds of quiet between the pops, turn the heat off immediately. This means the popcorn is mostly popped. Allow to cool a few minutes before placing in a bowl.

Adapted from Melissa D’Arabian’s Spiced Kettle Corn



3 thoughts on “The courtyard

  1. Pingback: Shareable Moments: June 2016 | Neighborly Life

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