Oscar night is approaching and we always enjoy an indulgent night on the couch watching the Hollywood action.
And on that couch there are always snacks inspired by Wolfgang Puck, the food master of celebrity parties.
This night also marks his 20th year catering the Governor’s Ball. His signature smoked salmon pizza, wagyu beef sliders and remoulade, and chicken pot pie with shaved black truffle always make an appearance. But we’ll dream of the crispy lobster dumplings with five spice and shots of carrot orange gazpacho.
Last year, we had some couch potato fun cutting tortillas with star-shaped cookie cutters, baking them until they were crisp, and spreading them with smoked salmon cream cheese to nibble during the show. They were a delight and pretty stylish to boot.
But this year, we’re thinking of whipping up something sweeter.
FunkyChunky Chocolate Popcorn has a cult following, and we’re keen to give the artisanal snack a whirl. It’s on this year’s Oscars dessert menu, alongside citrus panna cotta and chocolate-dipped strawberry cheesecake pops.
“FunkyChunky arrives LOADED with nuts – big almonds, whole pecans and jumbo cashews glazed to perfection with the popcorn. Hand-drizzled by artisans with dark, milk and white chocolates, we then break it up into mouth-watering chunks, with no two pieces alike.”
12 cups popped popcorn
3.5 cups whole cashews, almonds and pecan halves
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
¾ cup butter
½ cup light corn syrup
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup good quality dark chocolate chips
½ tsp neutral cooking oil
1 ½ cups white chocolate chips
Heat oven to 250*F. Place popped corn and nuts in large roasting pan.
Make caramel: combine brown sugar, butter and syrup in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat until mixture boils. Boil for 2 more minutes. Remove from heat, and stir in baking soda.
Pour mixture over popcorn and nut mix in roaster. Stir well. Bake for 60 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes. Remove from oven and turn out onto parchment paper. Let cool completely.
Melt dark chocolate and oil. (Some say to melt in a sandwich bag in the microwave for up to 30 seconds, knead bag and zap again repeating until melted. Then snip corner of bag and drizzle over popcorn). Drizzle over popcorn with a spoon from a height. Repeat with white chocolate.
Let stand until chocolate is set (three to four hours). Break popcorn mixture into chunks and store in airtight containers.
OSCAR PARTY POPCORN FROM THE CHEW
Melt the 1 cup of butter in a medium sauce pot. Add 2 cups brown sugar, ½ cup light corn syrup and 2 tsp salt and cook for 5 minute, stirring occasionally.
Remove from heat and stir in ½ tsp baking soda.
Pour the mixture over 12 cups of popcorn, stirring to coat evenly.
Spread the mixture onto baking sheets lined with parchment or Silpat. Bake for 45 minutes at 250F.
Remove and sprinkle ½ cup butterscotch chips over top.
Allow to cool for 10 minutes.
Break into pieces.