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Simple Cooking - Spicy Dill Popcorn

By Anthony Todd in Food on Feb 5, 2010 5:00PM

One of the things we like best about Marcus Samuelsson's New American Table is the variety of types of food - not necessarily flavors, though that's also present, but the different portion sizes and occasions provided for by Samuelsson's recipes. Like most cookbooks, there are sections for each meal, but New American Table also has snacks, small plates, breads, "everyday," "weekend," and "holiday."

Since this is an... ambitious cookbook, some of the snacks are frankly beyond the scope of "simple cooking." While we'll definitely be making trout pierogi or crispy lobster rolls someday, they require some fairly serious work to create a snack. Others fit the definition perfectly. This recipe, an amuse-bouche at his New York restaurant Aquavit, is perfect for munching in front of the TV or for a Super Bowl snack, if you still need ideas. We initially balked at the idea of mixing dill and popcorn, but it turns out to be a savory and delicious combination.

Spicy Dill Popcorn
adapted from New American Table, by Marcus Samuelsson.

Popcorn.jpg 3 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 cup popcorn kernels
1 tbsp salt
2 tbsp melted butter
2 tsp chili pepper
1/4 cup chopped dill
1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Pour the oil into a heavy saucepan with a cover, and pop the corn over medium-high heat. Shake often, to prevent the corn from burning. Once the popping slows down, take the pot off the heat and transfer the popped corn to a mixing bowl.

Note: if you're not used to popping corn in a pot, this may take a little getting used to. Shake it often, or you will burn the kernels. When you remove the lid, be careful - hot condensation will have formed underneath it.

Toss the popped corn with all the other ingredients. When everything is nicely coated, transfer to a serving bowl and enjoy!