Stove-top popcorn always trumps microwave popcorn. This spicy, maple-based version is guaranteed to become a snacking staple.
NUTRIENTS PER SERVINGSERVING SIZE: 1 CUP (250 ML) POPCORN263 calories, 15 g fat, 5 gsaturated fat, 93 mg sodium, 33 gcarbohydrates, 2 g fibre, 24 g sugars,2 g protein.
Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).
Line two rimmed baking sheet with foil.
Lightly coat one baking sheet and a wooden spoon with 1 Tbsp (15 mL) canola oil.
In a large saucepan with a lid, heat the remaining 3 Tbsp (45mL) canola oil over medium-high heat. Add the popcorn kernels, cover and cook, shaking the pan occasionally to prevent burning. When the popping slows to 3–5 seconds between pops, remove from the heat and let cool for 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and remove unpopped kernels.
On the foil-lined baking sheet without canola oil, spread the pecans and sunflower seeds in a single layer. Bake for 7–8 minutes, until lightly toasted and fragrant. When cool enough to handle, coarsely chop. Add to popcorn and toss to combine.
In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Stir in the maple syrup, ground chili and salt, then bring to a boil and cook, without stirring, until the mixture reaches 300°F (150°C) on a candy thermometer, about 15–20 minutes.
Pour the syrup over the popcorn and quickly stir with the oiled spoon to evenly coat. Immediately spread the mixture on the foil-lined and oiled pan. Let cool completely, and then break into bite-sized pieces and serve.
Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.