Sunday, June 3, 2012

Product Review: Nordic Ware Microwave Popcorn Popper

I have been using this Nordic Ware popcorn popper my whole life and LOVE it.  I can't fathom why it lives in obscurity.  Perhaps it's because it looks so unassuming:

It has all the benefits of microwave popcorn:
Making popcorn with it takes under five minutes.
It eliminates concerns about using the stove near a toddler (bonus!)

It has all the benefits of air-popped popcorn:
You have complete control over flavor, salt, and fat.
You avoid preservatives and other additives.
You have a lower cost and generate less packaging waste than traditional microwave popcorn.

To use it, pick up your preferred popcorn kernels, put them in the popper, and microwave it with the cover on for around three minutes.*  When you take the popper out, you'll have fresh popcorn ready for topping.

Although this popper is what Alton Brown would call a "unitasker," it does its job so elegantly that I'm happy to make shelf space for it. You can get your own for about ten bucks from Amazon, and it can often be found hiding on the shelves of your local Target.

The only drawback with this popper is that it is not designed to eat directly out of the bowl.  Although you can indeed eat from the bowl, and I usually do, the base stays extremely hot for several minutes after the popping is done, so you'll need some kind of trivet.  And if you have leftovers (ha!), you'll have to transfer them because the cover has vents for steam and isn't air tight. Last, if you add your toppings directly to the bowl, you'll need to clean it carefully before using it again.  When I've left traces of butter in it, the next time I used it, the kernels get too hot and started to slowly melt into the popper bowl.

Happy snacking!


*The popping time will vary depending on how many kernels you add and the wattage of your microwave.

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