Movie Night Snacks
Friday night is movie night at my house! We love movies, but then who doesn’t love a good movie? Whether at home or at the movies, this is the time to hang out with friends and family, relax and escape to faraway worlds. Not to mention, it is the perfect excuse for late night snacks you might not normally have.
Microwave popcorn is all fine and good. It is convenient and comes in a variety of flavors. But I still love to make popcorn right on top of the stove. If you have never made popcorn on the stove top, it is very easy.
Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in a heavy bottom pan over medium heat. I put a couple of kernels of popcorn in the bottom. When they pop I know the oil is hot. Fish those few kernels out, then add 2/3 cup of popcorn kernels, about 4 ounces. Once the kernels start popping, start shaking or stirring the popcorn. Continue to let the popcorn pop, stirring continuously until popping slows to 1 or 2 seconds between pops.
If kettle corn is more your thing, try this sweetened popcorn:
In a small saucepan, combine 1-cup of brown sugar and 3 tablespoons of butter and heat over low heat stirring occasionally until butter and sugar melt together. Stir in 1 tablespoon of honey and keep stirring for a couple of minutes over low heat. When it starts bubbling, pour over over popped popcorn, stirring to help evenly distribute the syrup.
Our merchants developed a stovetop popcorn popper that I have fallen in love with: the CHEFS Stainless Steel Popcorn Kettle.
Its heavy bottom, distributes the hat evenly and helps to create light, fluffy, theater-style popcorn. It has a stirring handle built right into the lid as well as a butter melting cup. And, for truly gourmet popcorn, the melting cup is removable and you can drizzle in chocolate or add fruit or candy while stirring.
I love something sweet with my salty popcorn. Fruit gives a sweet balance to movie night snacks. Any fruit will do: pineapple, kiwi, melon, strawberries, grapes and blueberries. Pierce different colored fruits and make a deliciously healthy snack. You can serve with a cup of whipped cream or vanilla yogurt for extra flavor. For a tangy dip, whisk together 2 cups of Greek yogurt and 1/4 cup honey. That is all you need for a flavorful, light fruit dip.
For added flavor, grill the fruit 2 to 3 minutes on each side. The heat will help bring out the fruity flavors.
I love the Rosle Kabob Skewers. The double-pronged skewers help keep the fruit on the skewers and prevents the kabobs from rolling around. On the grill, the tab at the base of the skewer makes turning the kabob super easy.
Don’t buy the canned stuff. Make your own, then you can make it as spicy or cheesy as you want. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add 1/2 a diced small onion. Saute the onion 2 to 3 minutes. Add 1 minced clove of garlic. Continue to cook until onions are translucent. Add 2 cups of drained pinto or black beans. Cook 3 to 4 minutes until heated through. Mash the beans using a potato masher. Add 1 cup salsa, 1/2 teaspoon cumin, 1/4 teaspoon cayenne, salt and pepper to taste, and stir in 3/4-cup pepper jack or Mexican blend cheese. Stir until combined. Serve hot with tortilla or potato chips.
This homemade bean dip is also good on nachos. Just spread mixture onto tortilla chips, top with cheese, meat, onions, or the toppings of your choice. Heat under the broiler until heated through.
Don’t want to take the time to make nachos? Try it as the base of chalupas. Spread a thin layer on a chalupa shell. Top with browned hamburger, lettuce, cheese, diced tomatoes and a dollop of sour cream.
I use the Flip Potato Masher for my mashed potatoes and bean dip. It folds flat for storage, but is sturdy enough to quickly mash potatoes or beans.
Want more snack ideas? Check out CHEFS Recipes!
Your Turn: What is your favorite snack to have on hard for movie night?