Chile Lime Tequila Popcorn

Chile Lime Tequila Popcorn Recipe

I tucked a bag of this chile lime tequila popcorn into my luggage as I was packing for a trip to Santa Fe, New Mexico a few weeks back. The recipe came from a new single-subject book, Popcorn, which caught my attention because it was photographed by my talented friend Lara Ferroni. To choose one recipe to try from sixty popcorn-centric creations was a bit of a challenge, but my love for lime-spritzed savory treats led me to page 39. Fresh popcorn is tossed with melted butter, lime juice, jalapeno peppers, red pepper flakes, cumin and a splash of tequila. I threw in a couple handfuls of toasted peanuts for good measure before securing the bag with a bit of twine.

Chile Lime Popcorn Recipe

Popcorn enthusiasts will find plenty to inspire here. Dozens of toppings are suggested - from herbes de Provence to chai spices, za'atar to Chinese five spice. There are plenty of sweet ideas too, for those of you who find yourself solidly in the kettle corn camp.

There was also a Spanish smoked paprika popcorn that just about won out - and I think I'll try that one next. Unless one of you can trump that by suggestion a favorite topping of your own for me to try. -h

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Chile Lime Tequila Popcorn Recipe

4 quarts freshly popped popcorn*
1/3 cup butter, melted
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice
1/2 teaspoon lime zest
1 teaspoon tequila
1/2 small jalapeno, seeds and membrane removes, minced
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon ground cumin

Preheat the oven to 300F degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil or a silicone baking mat (hs note: or unbleached parchment paper). Set aside.

Put the popcorn in a large, clean paper bag or a washable muslin bag. In a medium-size bowl whisk together the butter, lime juice and zest, and tequila. Add the jalapeno. In a small bowl combine the black pepper, salt, red pepper, and cumin.

Drizzle half of the butter mixture over the popcorn, fold over the top of the bag, and shake until the popcorn is coated and moist. Taste. Add more of the butter mixture if you like, and give a second shake. Sprinkle (most of) the pepper mixture over the popcorn, fold over the top of the bag, and shake a few times to coat. Taste, and if you'd like more pepper flavor add the rest of it.

Spread the popcorn evenly over the baking sheet and bake until the popcorn is dry, five to seven minutes.

*To pop 4 quarts of popcorn, heat 1/4 cup clarified butter, coconut oil, or olive oil in a deep pot over medium heat. Add a few kernels to the pot. Once they pop, add 3/4 cup popcorn kernels and shake the pot until they cover the pot evenly. Cover the pot and shake intermittently until the popping slows to 5 seconds between pops. Remove the popcorn from heat and transfer it to whatever bag you are going to use for tossing.

Make 4 quarts of popcorn.

Reprinted with permission from Popcorn by Patrick Evans-Hylton. (Sasquatch Books 2008)

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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Comments

  • We especially love that you even "vake" the popcorn for a true Mexican flavour! Jalapeno powder would also be a good addition...and of course a cold Corona man.

    LisaAW
  • YUM YUM. We love popcorn! Usually we're making homemade kettle corn with ghee, but I'm going to have to give this recipe a shot. We're all about lime stuff.

    Chiot's Run
  • Boy this sounds good! Love the flavour combo!

    Maninas
  • try buttermilk power with dried dill and kosher salt, along with some melted butter or olive oil of course.

    michaela
  • olive oil+ nutritional yeast + garlic powder = best popcorn topping ever! ...although... this lime one looks pretty good!

    kjerstiye
  • I was just thinking to myself that it might be nice to watch a movie tonight. I'm thinking "Happy Go Lucky." Now I'm just gonna have to make some popcorn to go with it - this looks superb!

    Monica
  • I realize bacon isn't part of your normal repertoire but my husband has me convinced that Bacon Popcorn is amazing. He pops the corn kernels in bacon fat and adds chopped up pieces of smokey bacon to the bowl just before serving. We don't eat this on any regular basis, but he did convince me to make it as a treat at his latest guys party and it went down fast. Me, I prefer your version here!

    Maggie
  • When we were in Ecuador two years ago we were delighted to find popcorn used as an accompaniment to soups. Try spooning a little popcorn atop a bowl of soup...it is amazing!

    Patricia
  • I guess I have something to bring to the Oscars party I'm attending tonight...by the way, if you're into popcorn (or just cool photos) you must check out the cover of the Fall 2008 Gastronomica...gorgeous shot of a kernal of popped corn.

    Laura [What I Like]
  • I guess I have something to bring to the Oscars party I'm attending tonight...by the way, if you're into popcorn (or just cool photos) you must check out the cover of the Fall 2008 Gastronomica...gorgeous shot of a kernal of popped corn.

    Laura
  • When we make popcorn in a pot we add Tabasco with the oil and kernels at the very beginning. It comes out with a wonderful spicy favor. Just don't have your head over the pot when you remove the lid!

    Don
  • I am a true popcorn lover, so that book sounds perfect for me! Growing up, my family and I used to make homemade popcorn every single night. It was a tradition carried on from when my dad was growing up and his family did the same.

    ashley (sweet & natural)
  • I am a true popcorn lover, so that book sounds perfect for me! Growing up, my family and I used to make homemade popcorn every single night. It was a tradition carried on from when my dad was growing up and his family did the same.

    ashley (sweet & natural)
  • i am pretty plain jane when it comes to popcorn and clearly need a wake up call - thanks for sharing these ideas!! my only variation to the norm is that i don't ever use butter. instead i drizzle a good dose of extra virgin olive oil over the hot kernels and follow with a shake or two of sea salt - a giant bowl of that, a good chick flick, wine, and i'm pretty much in heaven!

    kim
  • I looove "real" popcorn. I sprinkle mine generously with furikake and a drizzle of sesame oil.

    meleyna
  • My husband makes Rosemary and Black Pepper Popcorn and I just love the savory flavors. For "sweet" I love Harry and David's Moose Munch...maybe we can make a homemade version.

    Torrie
  • Fresh lime and tequila flavours sound like just the ticket to lift the popcorn. Laura's photography is great so I'm looking forward to checking out the book when it reaches the UK. If anybody has Sally Schneiders book, The Improvisational Cook, this also has some great popcorn flavouring ideas.

    Sophie
  • Ah, my favorite snack dressed with tempting toppings. Who'd a thunk! Thanks for steering me to some new adventures.

    Joyce
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