Midnight Moonlight Licorice Popcorn

When we concocted this popcorn, we envisioned popcorn black as midnight.  But you don’t completely cover every puffed kernel; you have shadows and light—moonlight at midnight.  I’m not a black licorice fan but this is very good popcorn.

1/2 cup unpopped popcorn kernels
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
1/4 cup white corn syrup (Karo)
1/8 cup water
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons Anise (Licorice) Flavor
2 drops of Americolor Super Black food coloring gel or equal

Yields 14 cups of candy popcorn. This recipe can also be doubled successfully.

  1. Pop the popcorn kernels. Set aside in 2 large bowls.
  2. Over medium heat, melt the butter in a medium sauce pan.
  3. Add the corn syrup and water.  Stir.
  4. Add the sugar.  Make sure not to let any sugar stick to the edges of the pan. If one grain of sugar is left undissolved, it can cause the whole batch to crystallize.
  5. Bring to a boil and continue to cook until the mixture reaches 235-245 degrees. (Please use a candy thermometer). It is important for the mixture to reach this temperature, if it doesn’t the candy will not harden properly.
  6. Add the baking soda and stir quickly as the mixture begins to bubble. Once bubbly and frothy, remove the pan from heat.
  7. Add the flavor and food coloring until mixed in.
  8. Pour over the popped popcorn in both bowls. Fold into the popcorn until evenly coated.
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