If you want to make popcorn without resorting to bagged microwave popcorn, you can pop your own kernels on your stove top. An aluminum stove-top popcorn popper is a device that appears similar to a saucepan, but with a handle on the lid that rotates with a crank. The handle is attached to a blade in the bottom of the popper. As you turn the crank, it moves the blade which helps distribute the popcorn kernels to prevent them from heating unevenly.
Things You'll Need
3 tbsp. canola, peanut or grapeseed oil
1/2 cup popcorn kernels
Place your popper onto your stove top and set the heat to "medium." Lift the handle to raise the lid and pour 3 tbsp. of canola, peanut or grapeseed oil into the bottom of the popper, along with three to four popcorn kernels.
Lower the handle to replace the lid. Turn the crank clockwise until you hear the popcorn kernels start to pop--this means the oil is hot enough to heat the popcorn properly.
Lift the handle up and add approximately 1/2 cup of popcorn kernels into the bottom of the popper. Lower the handle so the lid covers the popper, then turn the crank clockwise for approximately three minutes or until the majority of the popcorn kernels have popped.
Transfer the popped kernels into a large bowl and discard any kernels that did not pop. Serve the popcorn immediately for the best-tasting results.
If you want to keep your popcorn healthy yet still flavorful, use 1 to 2 tbsp. of grated Parmesan cheese, ground spices or dried herbs instead of melted butter to add flavor to your popcorn without the extra fat.
Always keep the crank turning while the kernels are popping because the bottom blade moves the kernels around the popper to prevent some kernels from burning while others remain unpopped.
Never use olive oil for making popcorn--it cannot withstand the high temperatures and may start to smoke.