Last Christmas, I purchased a stainless steel stove-top (old-timey) popcorn popper from Lehman’s. It had gotten good marks from other buyers in their comments section, so despite the price tag, I bought one as a family gift.
Not Your Microwave Popcorn
This was hands-down one of the best things we’ve ever gotten. Not only does the popcorn taste so much better than the chemical-laden stuff you zap in the microwave, it’s much more frugal in the long run. Plain popcorn kernels are far less expensive.
It’s very durable and well-made. It has a stirring mechanism, though we have found it isn’t really necessary. The lid is clamped on so it doesn’t fall off when you pour out the popped corn.
We chose the stainless steel model over the aluminum for durability and because many think we should not be cooking in aluminum since ingesting it is not good for our health.
We have been so pleased with this popper that when our son saw an aluminum one (Whirley-Pop brand) in a thrift store recently, he wanted to have a back-up that they could keep in the camping supplies. We tried it out and found it to be quite inferior to the stainless steel version. It rocked on the stove because it was a bit rounded on the bottom. It did not distribute the heat as well and needed more attention as it popped. I’m not sure how it could be related, but we also noticed that the popcorn seemed to be all shell that stuck in our teeth even though it was the same bag we’d used last time.
The popper has been quite versatile too. The guys have taken in on Boy Scout campouts and used it on a grate directly over the campfire. The other Scouts insist it makes the best popcorn they’ve ever tasted and request it be brought along each time.
Popcorn To Boost Morale
In a previous post, I listed some items we would consider storing away for use as morale boosters in difficult times. We use this popper often now, but I would make sure to have plenty of plain popcorn put up for the future. A 50 lb bag from the big box store will go a long way! And don’t forget the salt and oil.
I have also read that in a pinch, unpopped corn kernels can be ground into cornmeal for bread or tortilla making.