Back in the early 80s, there were all sorts of new electronic appliances coming onto the market. My parents asked my brothers and I whether we would prefer a Video Cassette Recorder or a Microwave Oven. Both promised to revolutionise our lives!
We all voted for the VCR. We ended up with the microwave.
Oh well. It wasn’t all bad. We made a lot of microwave cakes. It was amazing – you were 10 minutes to cake at any point in the day.
We worked our way through the microwave cookbook. It turned out that all sorts of things could be baked until they were moist and floppy.
Unfortunately, you can maintain the excitement only so long of cooking stuff in a metal box with a spinning glass dish. These days our microwave is relegated to defrosting, melting and reheating. No actual cooking.
Well, there is one counter-example: microwave popcorn.
Think of all the technology that goes into that special plastic bag, bought from the supermarket, placed into a microwave, and zapped until fluffy popcorn appears. How did they ever make it before? Turns out that it was pretty simple.
And in fact, according to this great article I found on the interwebs, it can still be simple, and yet still use a microwave.
And for those who were concerned – the next year we got the VCR.
1/4 cup of ordinary popping corn
Place the popping corn into a sealed microwave safe container, e.g. microwave rice cooker, paper bag folded shut, etc.
Microwave on High in an 850W oven for 2:15 mins. Remove, tip into a bowl, and sprinkle with salt.
Okay.. a little word of warning. There are trade-offs between the following parameters: wattage of your oven, the amount of popping corn used, size of the cooking container, amount of corn that burns, amount of corn left unpopped. The first time you do this, keep a careful eye (and vigilant nose) on what is going on so that you can hit Stop if anything starts burning. I have erred on the side of unpopped kernels rather than burnt popcorn, but perhaps I could improve this with further experimentation.