Vegan Caramel Popcorn

Too often that salty sweet treat is off the table for my lactose intolerant husband. When my son asked if I could make a batch that Daddy could eat, how could I refuse?

Vegan Caramel Popcorn

This recipe is loosely based on one I found at Cooking Light. It includes many of those ingredients you would expect to find: brown sugar, corn syrup and vanilla. I added some hand harvested French sea salt (Sel de Camargue) and substituted coconut oil for the butter. Coconut oil has a lovely flavor and is my go-to substitute for pistachio brittle. That is, when I'm not using bacon grease for my bacon pecan brittle!

Cooling the hot popcorn before we dig in.

Cooling the hot popcorn before we dig in.

Vegan Caramel Popcorn

Serves 8, recipe adapted from Cooking Light

Ingredients

  • 1 cup popping corn
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Directions

Pop the popping corn according to the directions. 1 cup of un-popped pop corn, will make approximately 16 cups of popped popcorn. Place popcorn in a large bowl and set aside.

Preheat oven to 250 F. Lightly grease a sheet pan with non-stick cooking spray. In a small saucepan, combine brown sugar, corn syrup and sea salt. Bring to a boil and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and baking soda. Mixture will bubble vigorously.

Pour the hot mixture over the popcorn, coating thoroughly. Pour the popcorn on the greased sheet pan and place in the oven. Bake for 45-60 minutes, stirring the popcorn every 15 minutes to ensure even coating.

Once cooked, pour the hot popcorn onto parchment paper and let cool for 15 minutes. Will keep for up to a week when stored in a cool, dry place.

 

Dense Chocolate Cake-Gluten and Dairy Free

Or, adult brownies as my husband lovingly called them. Not because they have alcohol, simply because they are sophisticated and the very essence of chocolate. I made this cake a few years ago using butter and thought I would try a variation that omits the dairy and substituted coconut oil. It worked out perfectly. A little slice of this perfectly moist cake with a cup of coffee, or Bailey's and your dinner guests will go home happy!

Dense Chocolate Cake

Dense Chocolate Cake-Gluten and Dairy-Free

Adapted from www.epicurious.com

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 
  • Powdered sugar for additional decoration (if desired)
Measuring cocoa powder

Measuring cocoa powder

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 F and grease a 9-inch round baking pan. Line bottom with round of parchment paper and grease the paper. Chop chocolate into small pieces. In a microwave-safe glass bowl, melt chocolate with coconut oil. On full power microwave for 45 seconds, stir, then microwave for 30 second intervals stirring in between until the chocolate is fully melted. Whisk sugar into chocolate mixture. Add eggs and whisk well. Sift 1/2 cup cocoa powder over chocolate mixture and whisk until just combined. Pour batter into pan and bake in middle of oven 20-25 minutes, or until top has formed a thin crust. Cool cake in pan on a rack 5 minutes and invert onto a serving plate.

To create a design on top,  place a stencil (you can cut one out of parchment paper, like making a snowflake), and dust with icing sugar. Carefully remove the parchment paper and serve immediately.

Lots of chocolate goes into this dense cake.

Lots of chocolate goes into this dense cake.