Spicy Pimentón Popcorn
Using more oil than popcorn, a technique developed by Jessica Koslow of Sqirl in Los Angeles, yields a particularly crisp and rich popcorn. Here, the kernels are popped, then tossed while still hot with a combination of sweet and hot smoked paprikas, and bit of earthy cumin. It's a complex mix that can be as hot as you can take it.
- Serves: 12 persons
- ½cup grapeseed or other neutral oil with a high smoke point (such as corn, canola, or sunflower)
- ⅓cup popcorn kernels
- ½teaspoon fine sea salt
- ¼teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼teaspoon sweet paprika
- Pimentón (hot smoked paprika), to taste
Step 1In a large Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot set over medium-high heat, heat oil and 3 popcorn kernels. When kernels pop, add remaining kernels, lower heat to medium-low, and cover almost all the way with a lid, leaving a tiny crack open for steam to escape (face the crack away from where you are standing).
Step 2Cook, shaking occasionally, until popping stops.
Step 3Transfer popcorn to a bowl, and immediately toss with salt, cumin, sweet paprika and pimentón, if using. For the utmost crunch, let popcorn settle for 5 to 7 minutes before eating.