I am a sucker for anything caramel related, be it ice cream, cookies, coffee, etc., so there was a lot of joy in my heart when I realized that I could make perfectly sweet caramel corn at home. This recipe is fairly easy, it just takes some patience and a strong arm for whisking. The best part is that when you pour the caramel over the popcorn to begin with you don't have to get everything evenly coated right away, as the baking will do the work for you! Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we did, I think it will be a great addition to the holiday treat boxes I make for the neighbors (but mostly eat myself)....
1 c. butter
2 c. brown sugar, packed
1/2 c. light corn syrup
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 (3.5 oz) bags popcorn, popped
Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
Sort the popcorn between popped pieces and unpopped kernels, and add the popcorn to a large bowl (I believe my bowl was about 5 qts).
Melt the butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, and salt in a medium saucepan over medium heat, then bring the caramel mixture to a boil, being sure to stir constantly. Once the mixture has reached a boil, boil for 4 minutes without stirring. Remove from the heat and stir in the baking soda and vanilla. Drizzle the mixture over the popcorn while stirring to coat as well as possible.
Divide the mixture into two shallow baking dishes and bake in the oven for one hour, stirring every fifteen minutes. (The caramel mixture will cover more evenly as you bake). After the hour remove and let cool completely before shoving handfuls into your mouth.