Gourmet PopcornShare the Love
I can still remember the sound of popcorn popping in the kitchen. I can smell that unmistakable aroma, hear my mom laughing as, once again, she had too much popcorn in that old, beat-up aluminum popcorn pan and she had to dump what was already popped out of the top into a bowl while making sure the kernels that were still popping wouldn't fly out while she was trying to keep the popcorn from overflowing the pan completely.
She never did get the amount just right, and that was probably part of the fun for her, creating that moment of forever young-at-heart laughter as we watched her juggling the lid, the pan and the bowl. And she always managed to get the majority of the popcorn into that bowl, barely losing a fluffy white morsel, all the while shaking that pan over the top of the gas flame so the still-popping kernels didn't scorchheaven forbid!
Mom didn't give in to Jiffy-Pop and or to microwave popcorn, and I'm glad she didn't, at least not while I was living at home.
That popcorn pan finally gave out. She wore a hole right through the bottom with the friction from the stove burner, the heat, the oil and the explosive popping of that treat we just never seemed to be able to get enough of. That pan came out on many occasions: before we headed out to the drive-in movie, all bundled up in our pajamas and with a make-shift bed set up in the back of the station wagon; and while decorating the Christmas tree so we could string cranberries and popcorn garland, and she surely must have made double the popcorn then, because we ate way more than we managed to get on the string.
If she still had that popcorn pan today, it is one thing I would love to have and I would treasure once she's gone from this world. Such a simple thing, that popcorn pan, but oh the joy, the two of them, my mom and that old aluminum popcorn pan gave.
Today, my tastes may be a bit more mature and refined, but there are still times when nothing beats a good bowl of popcorn, especially gourmet popcorn! I don't have mom's popcorn pan, but I DO have a Whirley-Pop Stovetop Popcorn Popper. It effectively does what mom did, keeping the kernels and the oil moving constantly. I don't want to scorch one single kernel of my favorite Ladyfinger Rainbow Popcorn. I don't have a gas stove, so the flame isn't there. In fact, I have a glass top stove, but the hand crank mechanism makes it unnecessary to constantly shake the pan to keep the popcorn from burning. ANDthe flavor is the closest ever to what Mom used to make! It even has a 25-year guarantee, which tells me it will last at least as long as Mom's popcorn pan did!
So, today, when the grandkids visit, I pull out the Whirley-Pop and the Gourmet Popcorn and oil, butter (yes, melted butter must be drizzled) and salt, though I now use super-fine popcorn salt, and I create my own memoriesmemories I hope will be as treasured as mine own are. I would love it if one day my grandchildren or great-grandchildren ask me to will them my Whirley-Pop. THAT would be the ultimate compliment and I'd know that I achieved my goalused my love of popcorn to share a little love, just like Mom did! And I'll know the tradition will continue after I'm gone.