Aunt Marie’s Gourmet Kettle Baked Popcorn
Posted by Tampa Bay Food Monster on May 10, 2012
yeahhhhh okay! okay bloggin’. I BE BLOGGIN’! seriously.
yeah. that stuff. and no, i’m not talking that freshly-churned butter-fucked popcorn doled out in buckets by movie pushers all across this angry america of ours, no sir (or ma’am, depending on genitalia); i’m talking that off-the-shelf, ready-made, popped-at-some-distant-location-packed-in-a-container-and-shipped-to-you shit. oh yeah. like you get at k-mart for the holidays. but this ain’t yo grandad’s popped corn!!
…it’s your aunt’s.
aww yeah. this is your aunt. aunt marie? remember? she was from that one side of the family? you never see her anymore because of certain irreconcilable… issues? well, here she is. and she brought some of her famous popcorn!! remember? the popcorn with flavors. and by brought, i mean shipped to me, free of charge, for review.
there it is! thanks, auntie! [she even printed out her own label and everything!] well, let’s take a look at what we’ve got here… praline popcorn. this is heralded as the world’s only baked popcorn. interesting! right? interesting. probably. perusing the website reveals… well, a bit about it. maybe. it’s all a bit confusing. it says that some guy with four fingers said popcorn would be less chewy if they tossed it in the oven. so that’s what’s going on here. BUT. they say it’s not popped in the oven. so i guess they pop it using traditional methods, then shove it in the oven for “good measure”. okay. also, it is revealed that the lady on the bag is the grandmother, not the aunt. wtf.
directly underneath the fine old lady, you will find the words “the taste you’ve been missing” (OH, we’ll see about that), and then some nutritional bullshit. GET TO THE POPCORN!!
here are them poppin’ corns. so what kind of effect does the baking have? and how does that shit taste?? WELL LET ME TELL YOU! you know the taste that those giant christmastime tubs o’ popcorn have? you know, kinda… stale? well, that stale taste is definitely present here. i guess it’s just impossible to avoid it unless you popped that corn right before eating it.
the popcorn does achieve crunchiness through its baked-on topping (caramelized sugary stuff), but the topping is a bit crumbly and becomes rather dusty. it has a nice homemade feeling to it. and it is sweet but not insanely so, so you can eat a lot. it’s almost addictive? but that ‘stale’ quality keeps you from wanting more, even when the flavor might bring you back to it. oh, and a lot of the pieces are burnt, which is… unpleasant. if you’ve had burnt popcorn, you know what i’m talking about.
there is also the chocolate variety. this one isn’t sweet like the praline. i mean, it’s a bit sweet, but the chocolate used is definitely a bittersweet, dark chocolate. the website reports they use ghirardelli’s dark chocolate chips! excellent. the bag, however, listed the same ingredients as the other popcorn. eh? D:
if you were to eat a full bag of this one, you’re probably less likely to get sick than with the praline flavor, as this one isn’t boasting that same sweetness. but the chocolate seemed to have a greater tendency towards burnt piece, which was upsetting. and the these were a bit too bitter for me.
overall, this wasn’t the amazing popcorn experience i had hoped for. the bags i got were 4 oz of popcorn each, and the website offers 13 oz buckets for 15 bucks each. i’d say that’s pretty fair, because what i was provided with was waaay more than enough popcorn, and it totaled at 20 oz. the only thing that would hold me back from ordering this is that i didn’t like it. which, i guess, is kind of a big deal. it was interesting, different, but not something i especially cared for.
for comparison purposes, if i ever bought a christmas tin of popcorn, it would be for nostalgia. i regularly buy normal buttered popcorn for microwaving. and i used to work at a movie theater and make fresh popcorn myself, which is always just lovely. i’m generally okay with popcorn. i couldn’t finish this stuff. oh! and i got it like two months ago, had it then, and recently had it again and noticed no degradation in quality. i don’t know whether that speaks to its longevity, or just poorly of its initial state, but it is what it is.
sorry, auntie marie. if it makes you feel any better, i still have a quasi-incestuous crush on you! ;D / D:
popcorn available at: kettlebake.net