And, just like that, here we are again: back to school, and work, and another year that promises to be busier than the last. Now that the summer holidays are already a distant memory, here’s an after-school snack to help keep things fun, easy and healthy in the kitchen.
Parmesan popcorn is satisfying, savoury and simple to make in large batches. It’s fun for the kids to prepare, too. There’s nothing like getting the kids making their own food to help them appreciate the importance of good ingredients and healthy eating.
The popcorn poppers available at Williams-Sonoma are the healthiest, smartest way to prepare popcorn in the microwave. There’s no need to buy expensive sachets of special “microwave popcorn” (which usually contain added flavourings). There’s also no need to cook with oil when you use one of these or these. All you’ll need is a bag of popping corn kernels from the supermarket (which is incredibly affordable and will make several generous batches).
The best part of all is that you can use the very best ingredients you can find. Beautiful, freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano is a bit of a luxury, but the taste is really worth it. And if you grate it on a fine Microplane grater, you’ll see that a little goes a long way. High-quality extra-virgin olive oil, good sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper will also ensure this is one kids’ snack with serious gourmet cred.
STYLING TIP The kids will love flavouring their own popcorn to taste, so you can leave this part to them! But if you’re making this for a party snack instead of after school, then you could craft serving cones from greaseproof paper or parchment – simply seal with a sticker or twist at the bottom to secure. Parmesan popcorn is also perfect for kids on the go. Fill a brown paper lunch bag or plastic ziplock bag with as much popcorn as it will take – you can be sure it’s the one snack that won’t be left to rot in their school bag.
- 4 cups popped popcorn
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
- Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
Place the popcorn in a large bowl and drizzle with the olive oil until lightly coated. Sprinkle with the cheese and toss gently until it is evenly distributed. Season with salt and pepper. Makes 4 cups.
–If you have a New Year’s resolution to cook more at home for the family, book yourself into a class at the Williams-Sonoma Sydney Cooking School. There’s a range of classes for both beginners and experienced cooks, where you can up your culinary game in a fun and relaxing environment.