Wednesday, November 10, 2010

In Search of a Substitute: Orville Redenbacher's Lime and Salt Popcorn

Somebody call Dr. Drew, because I have an addiction to Lime and Salt Popcorn. I've been hooked since my first bag, and then it disappeared and I was distraught and hoarded my remaining supply. A couple of weeks ago I was in the grocery store when a single shaft of light shone down from the heavens and I saw, to my ecstatic surprise, that it was BACK! AND I BOUGHT FOUR BOXES! OOPS!

Tasty, tasty poison.

According to Wikipedia, which we all know is the world's most reliable source of information, popcorn from the store-bought microwave bags is... how do you say... not so good for you.

In 2006, concerns were raised about the levels of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA, a chemical related to Teflon) in popcorn bags. The high temperatures used in popping popcorn may facilitate the transfer of the chemical, which is carcinogenic in lab animals, into the popcorn oil.DuPont has agreed to eliminate almost all use of the chemical by 2015.
Additionally, the artificial butter flavoring used in many brands of microwave popcorn has been linked with the obstructive lung diseasebronchiolitis obliterans, sometimes referred to as "popcorn lung", in factory workers and others exposed to large amounts of the substance. The chemical diacetyl, the cause of bronchiolitis obliterans, has been removed from some popcorn brands.

"POPCORN LUNG?" That ain't right, you guys. I have to figure out how to replicate this delicious flavor on my own, so that "popcorn" and "lung" may never again be in the same sentence, unless it is to say "I inhaled the delicious, non-toxic popcorn scent into my lungs before eating the entire bag by myself. The end."

I get that you can make plain popcorn kernels in plain paper bags in the microwave, and you can make them on the stovetop, and then you can add your own flavorings. It's up to me now to figure out what process and what ingredients will most closely resemble Mr. Redenbacher's wretchedly glorious creation. Perhaps items from this site could be of help. In the meantime, let's hope I don't crumble and die from eating the 4 boxes I already bought. Because I will do it.

UPDATE: I figured out how to do it myself!

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