Welcome back to our Healthy Midnight Snack series! Tonight, I’ll be giving Orville a run for his money with my healthy alternative to his high-caloric, butter smothered microwave popcorn.
Presenting my pretty-in-pink Parmesan and Pink Pepper Popcorn! Perfect for a night in with your girlfriends, a summer backyard party, or perhaps just an evening alone (with Ryan Gosling, of course.)
The best part about this cinema treat? It doesn’t have any butter added to it. None. Zilch. Put that stick down, girl, and walk away.
I’m going to show you that you don’t need melted butter and salt to make popcorn flavourful. Instead, you add these exotic sweet and spicy pink peppercorns. I love pink peppercorn. You never know if the bite you’re about to take will be slightly sweet or more peppery. It’s a surprise every time! Plus, it’s pink. Who doesn’t want their popcorn to be pink?
Also, instead of tossing the popcorn in heaps and heaps of table salt, the saltiness is derived from the parmesan. It also gives it that distinctive cheesy twang you get from showering that fake cheese dust on it. (Can you tell I’m trying to make everyone happy in one snack, yet?!)
We’re also popping this corn in healthy coconut oil, not canola or vegetable. It’s a lighter calorie oil, so you can use the remainder of it from the pan to toss the popcorn with the cheese and pepper to make it all stick nicely!
I hope you try this popcorn tonight. The combination of the two flavours is mind-boggling!
Parmesan & Pink Pepper Popcorn
- 1 tsp pink peppercorns
- 3 tbsp (15g) freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 3 tbsp coconut oil
- 1/3 cup popcorn kernels
MAKE THE TOPPING: On a chopping board, lay a small piece of baking paper down. Pour the teaspoon of peppercorns on top and spread them out evenly. Place a second small piece of baking paper over top of the peppercorns and firmly roll a rolling pin over them. Crush the pepper as small as you can, but a few bigger pieces are fine. (Alternatively, you can do this step in a mortar and pestle.) Add the grated parmesan to the crushed pepper and combine well. Set aside.
MAKE THE POPCORN: Add the coconut oil to a large soup pot and heat over medium-high heat. Once the coconut oil has melted, add two or three kernels to the pot and cover with a lid. When you hear the two kernels pop, add the remainder of the popcorn, cover, and remove from the heat for 30 seconds exactly. Place back on the heat and wait until you hear consistent popping. Once it really starts going, shake the pot gently side-to-side. Continue to shake the pot until the popping slows to 5–7 seconds between each pop.
Remove the popcorn to a large bowl, letting the leftover coconut oil drip onto the hot popcorn. Add the cheese and pepper topping and toss gently until covered. If some cheese or pepper sticks to the bottom of the bowl, just use a spatula to gently lift and fold it into the popcorn.
You know what else this popcorn recipe would be perfect for? That Oscars party you’re going to this weekend! Or the one you’re hosting! Or really just anything Oscars related. Can you tell I’m excited? Who else will be tuning in on Sunday?
We’re almost at the end of our Midnight Snack series! I’ve really been enjoying this one, and I hope you have too! We only have one more snack left in the series, so feel free to tweet me (@cinnamonscribe) with the hashtag #CinnamonMidnightMunchies or leave a comment below if there are any unhealthy snacks you’d like me to take on and make skinny jeans friendly!