Once you discover that making stovetop popcorn can be nearly as easy as popping a bag of the microwavable stuff, you'll never go back. A Whirley Pop pot is a tool that allows you to pop a fresh batch of corn in just a few minutes using the oil of your choosing instead of the congealed fake butter used in microwavable popcorn bags. Following the Whirley Pop directions is easy enough for a kid, but this is a project that is best handled by an adult.
First-Time Whirley Pop Instructions
It's advisable to season your Whirley Pop the first time you use it or if it hasn't been used in a long time. Despite its name, this process isn't really about flavoring your popcorn. Seasoning a pan basically means baking on a thin layer of oil, protecting the pan and making it nonstick. This is really useful for making popcorn because you want the kernels to be able to move freely inside the pot.
To season your Whirley Pop, simply pour in about a tablespoon of vegetable oil and swirl it around until the entire interior surface is coated. Heat the Whirley Pop on a burner over medium heat for about a minute, rotating it slightly to make sure the hot oil is distributed evenly. Let the pot cool and wipe out any oil with a paper towel. You're ready to make popcorn now.
Also, if you're new to following Whirley Pop instructions, it's important to know that the company makes different models for home use and for outdoor use. Don't attempt to use an indoor Whirley Pop over a campfire or other open fire.
Whirley Pop Directions
The basic Whirley Pop recipe is hard to mess up. The company suggests putting 1/2 cup of popcorn kernels and 1 to 3 tablespoons of oil in the pot. How much oil you choose to use depends on how calorie-conscious you're being and how much oil flavor you want to detect. Generally, using just 1 tablespoon is sufficient, but using more oil is useful if you want your toppings to stick to the kernels. Coconut and canola oils are both appropriate for making popcorn but don't use olive oil, which burns quickly.
From here, the Whirley Pop instructions take no more than five minutes to complete. Once the kernels and oil are in the pot, place the Whirley Pop on a stove burner. Turn it to medium or medium-high heat. Don't preheat the burner; the kernels should heat up slowly as the burner heats up.
Gently turn the pot's crank the entire time it's on the stove. You should start to hear the kernels pop within a few minutes. Continue turning the crank until the popping slows to a stop or the crank becomes hard to turn. Take the Whirley Pop off the stove and open it facing away from you to vent the steam. Pour the finished popcorn into a bowl and add salt or other seasonings.
Ideas for Whirley Pop Recipes
The beautiful thing about popping fresh corn by the batch is that it's easy to experiment with tons of different flavor combinations. There's really no wrong Whirley Pop recipe – making the perfect bowl depends on what you love. Stir in Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, onion powder or chili powder or drizzle melted butter over the freshly popped corn and sprinkle in a ranch seasoning packet. For a one-ingredient way to flavor fresh Whirley pop popcorn, sprinkle "everything bagel" seasoning over it.
To please a sweeter palette, toss buttered popcorn with a mixture of cinnamon and sugar. If you're not afraid to get your hands dirty, stir in mini chocolate or caramel chips while the popcorn is still hot so they melt. Add chopped salted peanuts for crunch.