I love popcorn balls and starting in October and going through the Holidays they are everywhere. As much as I love popcorn balls, I try to resist them. Why? Because I am always disappointed in store bought popcorn balls’ dry texture and lack of flavor. I want the marshmallowy goodness of the popcorn cakes my mom used to make when I was a kid. To achieve that I was going to have to figure out how to make my own popcorn balls.
It isn’t hard to make popcorn balls but there are a few things to remember.
1. Take time to sort the old maids from your popcorn before you cover them with marshmallow mixture. Your teeth will thank you for it later.
2. The marshmallow mixture is hot enough to burn you so let it cool down for a few minutes before mixing it with the popcorn.
3. To prevent the popcorn/marshmallow mixture from sticking to your hands, rub them all over with a couple tablespoons of butter.
1/3 cup unpopped popcorn
3 TBS butter
2 1/2 cups mini marshmallows
Place a 3 1/2 quart, or larger, saucepan over high heat. Let the empty saucepan sit on the heat for a minute or two. When it is hot, add the oil and three popcorn kernels. When the three kernels pop, add the remaining popcorn. Cover and shake the pan once or twice. Cook, shaking constantly as the popcorn rapidly pops to prevent burning. When the popping slows down to a count of three between pops, remove from stove and pour into a big bowl. Spend some time sorting through the popcorn to remove all the unpopped popcorn kernels.
In a small saucepan, melt the butter, over medium heat. Add the marshmallow and stir until the marshmallows melted and combined with the butter. Pour the marshmallow mixture over the popcorn and let it cool for a minute while you butter your hands. Using your hands mix the popcorn into the marshmallows until well coated. Press the popcorn into a one cup dry measuring cup coated with non-stick cooking spray to help form the balls. Remove the popcorn ball from the measuring cup and let cool completely on a sheet of waxed paper. Wrap individually in plastic wrap and store in an air tight container.
Adapted from my mom’s Popcorn cake recipe