“TCHOMunch” – Caramel Chocolate Popcorn
When you can’t decide between popcorn, pretzels, dried fruit, and chocolate and just decide to have them all, we present you with TCHOMunch – our take on caramel chocolate popcorn.
12 cups popped popcorn (about 1/2 cup kernels)
2 cups broken pretzels (or pretzel chips)
3/4 cup butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups (or one 8oz. bag) Organic 66% Dark Chocolate Baking Drops
1 1/2 teaspoons butter (for chocolate mixture)
1 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup Roasted Organic Cacao Nibs
Coarse sea salt, to taste
1. Preheat oven to 250F.
2. In a large roasting pan, mix and spread popcorn and broken pretzels
3. Using a medium-sized heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine the butter, brown sugar, and corn syrup. Cook over medium heat for about 8 minutes, or until mixture comes to a boil.
4. Continue boiling for two minutes. At the end of two minutes, remove the pan from heat, and stir in baking soda.
5. Pour the warm mixture over the popcorn & pretzels, and sprinkle in the 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Stir to coat all of the pieces.
6. Bake the mixture for 60 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.
7. Remove from oven and transfer the popcorn to wax paper – try to get the pieces well distributed into a fairly even layer.
8. Allow to cool completely.
9.Using a double-boiler, melt the chocolate with the 1-1/2 teaspoons of butter until it’s liquid.
10. Mix the cranberries and cacao nibs into the melted chocolate.
11. Spoon the chocolate/cranberry/nib mixture over the cooled caramel corn/pretzels so that roughly half the popcorn is chocolate-drenched.
12. Sprinkle sea salt to taste over top of the chocolate while still liquid. Allow to cool for 3-4 hours to set the chocolate.
13. Break into pieces, and enjoy!
This recipe has been TCHO-ified, but the original (and outstanding) version comes to us from BrownieBites.net. If you generally prefer your salty snacks on the salty side, consider using salted butter, and be generous with the sea salt sprinkling at the end. Be careful of over-salting if the pretzels you chose are very well-salted themselves. For a slightly different look and flavor to the dish, try using SeriousMilk™ 39% Cacao Baking Discs rather than the 66% Dark. Also, you could substitute nuts for the pretzels, blueberries for the cranberries… Be creative!