When I first tell people about this recipe, I think they imagine plain popcorn smeared with peanut butter.  While I am not doubting that that would be a nice combination, this recipe is so much better than that.  This is not caramel corn… it is not popcorn with peanut butter on it.  The coating is of a consistency that I cannot quite describe.  It’s warm, smushy, a bit chewy and completely wonderful.

My first memories of peanut butter popcorn are as a young child.  My Mom would make it every once in a great while.  I remember her putting it out in the garage on the hood of the car to cool once.  We had popcorn a ton when I was a kid… the sound of the hot air popper makes me all warm and fuzzy… but those special occasions of peanut butter popcorn stand out.

My High School BFF, Heather, and I (holla, Feesh!), would make this and eat it until we were sick to our stomachs.  Then we would watch a little SNL (circa Wayne’s World and Dennis Miller) or Heathers, imagine ourselves married to Christian Slater and then eat some more, finally falling into a sugar coma.  Good times.

I have never heard of someone eating this and not loving it, except for my sister-in-laws’ friends in Australia.  Apparently, Australia has unusual peanut butter and no corn syrup, so as much as I love Aussies, their votes don’t count in this instance.

 

Peanut Butter Popcorn

1/2 c.           unpopped popcorn

1 1/2 c.        peanuts (I prefer dry-roasted peanuts… always, but esp. in this recipe.  If you don’t have them, make it without and it will be fine)

1c.                 sugar

1/2c.             honey

1/2c.             corn syrup

1c.                 peanut butter

1t.                  vanilla

* Pop corn into a 9X13″ pan.  Remove any unpopped kernels, stir in peanuts and keep warm in a 250 degree oven.

* In a heavy saucepan, combine sugar, honey and corn syrup.  Bring mixture to boiling, continue boiling for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.  Remove from heat.   (Please do not go crazy with the boiling.  You will end up with a rock-hard mess.  And remember that boiling sugar is squirrelly and keep an eye on it)

*Stir in peanut butter and vanilla.  Immediately pour over popcorn and stir to coat.

Try not to burn the daylights out of your fingers as you dive in.  ( :

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