Country Cousin Popcorn Balls

Country Cousin Popcorn Balls

Yield: 18 balls

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Ingredients
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2/3 cup apple juice or water
  • 2/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 4 quarts warm popped popcorn
  • 1 cup honey-roasted, unsalted or salted peanuts
  • 1 8-ounce package chopped dates (1 1/2 cups)
Directions
  1. Combine sugar, apple juice, syrup, butter and salt in a heavy saucepan.
  2. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.
  3. Remove sugar from sides of pan with a wet brush.
  4. Cook, without stirring, until mixture reaches 270 degrees Fahrenheit, or the soft crack stage on a candy thermometer.
  5. Add vanilla.
  6. Pour mixture over popped popcorn, peanuts and dates; mix well. Wet or butter hands and shape into 3-inch balls.
Notes

1 ounce of unpopped popcorn kernels (2 tablespoons household measure) makes approximately 1 quart of popped popcorn.

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