Yeah, this happened. And I need to tell you about it.
Although I’m somewhat of a wuss when it comes to spicy food, I always have a bottle of Sriracha in the fridge. It’s the red stuff that comes in a squeeze bottle with a rooster on it and bright green lid – known by those who aren’t quite sure how to pronounce it as rooster sauce. It’s spicy, but not overly so (about half the heat of a jalapeno pepper) and easy to use when you need to add a little kick to something. Anything, really. Even caramel corn.
We used to make caramel corn ALL the TIME. It’s easy, once you’ve done it. Pop your corn. Simmer brown sugar, corn syrup (or Roger’s golden syrup or honey) and butter for 4 minutes. Stir in a teaspoon each of baking soda and vanilla, which will make it foam up like a science experiment and ultimately have a nice light crunch without sticking to your teeth.
Spread it out and bake it, and you have yourself the very best caramel corn ever.
Unless you like things spicy, in which case you’d swap that vanilla for a squirt of Sriracha sauce.
Sriracha Caramel Corn
10 cups popped popcorn
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup corn syrup or Rogers Golden syrup
1/4 cup butter
1 tsp. baking soda
1-2 tsp. Sriracha (or to taste)
Preheat the oven to 250F and put the popcorn in a big bowl.
In a medium saucepan, combine the brown sugar, corn syrup and butter and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat and boil without stirring, swirling the pan occasionally, for 4 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the baking soda and Sriracha – it will foam up at first, but stir it well to get any lumps of baking soda out.
Quickly pour over the popcorn and stir (with a heatproof spatula or tongs) to coat well. Spread out onto a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes, stirring once or twice. Cool and break apart. Serves a medium-sized crowd.