Friday, March 4, 2011

Healthy Microwave Popcorn

It's Friday and I'm looking forward to a weekly tradition that my daughter Kinsey and I have:  Watching the latest episode of "Merlin" on the Syfy channel.  This TV show is a winner!  It's a British production about King Arthur of Camelot and the magician Merlin in their younger days.  The third season is being broadcast now and the first two seasons are out on DVD.  I love it because it's a G-rated series that the whole family can enjoy (it's a favorite of my 22 year old son Adam).  Of course any night spent in front of the TV must be accompanied by popcorn!  I've been concerned lately about the bags of microwave popcorn that are always being popped in our house. The stuff you buy in the store contains not so healthy ingredients, and many manufacturers of microwave popcorn use perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) in their packaging.  PFOA has been associated with increased cancer rates and birth defects.  I was thrilled to come across a superb idea for making your own microwave popcorn in the book The Cleaner Plate Club by Beth Bader and Ali Benjamin.  I tried their method today and it worked great.  Here's what you do:

Place 1/4 cup of popcorn kernels in a brown paper lunch bag.  Fold over the top of the bag 2 or 3 times (do not staple or tape) and place on its side in the microwave.  Cook on HIGH for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes (my microwave took the full 2 minutes) or until there are about 2 seconds between each pop.  Remove the bag from the microwave and add olive oil (or butter if you prefer) and salt.  Shake the bag and voila! 

Beth and Ali also have some great popcorn seasoning ideas in their cookbook.  Here's one:

Herbed Popcorn:  Mix 1/2 tsp dried basil, 1/4 tsp dried oregano, a pinch of cayenne pepper, and 1 Tbsp grated parmesan cheese.  Sprinkle over oiled or buttered popcorn.

I hope you'll try this idea and whatever you're watching this weekend, enjoy!


  1. This has forever revolutionized the way that I think about microwave popcorn! Thank you, Wendy!

  2. I can't wait to try this! :)