Popcorn! A Rainbow of Popcorn!


I never really liked popcorn, because it usually tasted like cardboard, had the texture of packing peanuts, and left me picking painful hulls out of my teeth for hours on end. Movie popcorn was the worst – their idea of a “medium” is enough to safely ship a stereo to California, and if you order it with “butter”, the substance they slather it with may lubricate the dry, woody substance while you gnaw squeakingly on it, but the only relationship it bears to butter is a diacetyl or acetoin compound that makes it taste vaguely like butter, and the chance that someone in the manufacturing process may have showed the vat a picture of a cow. But enough salt, and anything can be choked down, because you have to drink a half-gallon of something, anything, to wash the salt out of your mouth.

But that’s the cheap, bargain-basement, high-yield, low-cost, perfect-economy popcorn bred to pop large and reliably. The growers have bred it with seed corn for hardiness and yield, resulting in a breed that only a flat-toothed ruminant could enjoy grinding up, but is cheap and easy to grow. It just doesn’t taste like much unless you drown it in flavorings.

Not so if you buy GOOD popcorn, corn bred for flavor, texture, and a thin hull that falls away from the popped portion, so it doesn’t get caught in your teeth. These popcorns come in a whole variety of colors, sizes, and kernel shapes, and each one has a distinct flavor, texture, and even comes out a slightly different shade – some snowy white, some yellow, some barely tinged with purple, red, or even orange stripes. And best of all, popcorn counts as a bread choice, with a glycemic index of 55, 31 calories when plain, and has high fiber content, which is good for all sorts of things.

Alton Brown of Good Eats fame even eats plain, airpopped popcorn as breakfast cereal, with milk and a touch of sugar. Splenda would work. I plan to try it.

I got a variety pack of 12 different types online, a 15-oz plastic screw-top
bottle of each, for $28.50 plus shipping. This is a LOT of popcorn,
and each variety tastes and crunches different. I use BUTTER when I’m
feeling rebellious, or I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter spray and Molly
McButter buds when I’m not. I also use a non-sodium salt substitute a
lot that tastes just fine on popcorn because I need to watch my sodium

I either use an airpopper, or I do the Alton Brown
method of a stainless-steel bowl
with a little olive oil on the bottom
and foil on top, and put it right on the stove, keeping it moving with
tongs. Then I serve it right in the bowl after taking off the foil.

you can use a Whirly-Pop, or other popper of your choice. But the
air-popper was the concession to unitaskers I made for the cause.
smile Most of these sites sell poppers as well as their own
varieties of corn.


I recommend the Alton Brown “Good Eats” episode “Pop Culture” for more information on popcorn. Show info and airtimes are available here.