MORE than 5000 years ago our ancestors used to heat up corn kernels over fires and sizzling hot stones to enjoy the snack we now all know and love as ‘popcorn’.
Popping Corn (or Maize) is able to pop because, unlike other grains, its kernels have a hard moisture-sealed hull and a dense starchy filling. This hard hull allows pressure to build inside the kernel until an explosive ‘pop’ results. Some strains of corn are even cultivated specifically as popping corns. When popped, it comes in two basic shapes; snowflake and mushroom. We’ve more than likely seen both examples. If you haven’t because you just shovel it in (like I do) maybe you’ll take a closer look the next time you buy some.
Although it tends to be covered in sugar or toffee, popcorn with savoury flavours has become popular in America and is seen to be the next big thing in healthy snacking in the UK.
So here is Diva Popcorn, new to our shores. To keep it even more healthy it’s been air-popped – rather than oil-popped – so each single 21g bag contains about 100 calories, less than 0.4g saturated fat and costs 85p a bag. Because it’s wholegrain the makers say it’s full of antioxidants, vitamins B and E, minerals and fibre.
It’s the flavours that will really surprise though; Sea Salt & Balsamic Vinegar; Camembert, Gouda & Brie; Rock Salt and Sweet Chipotle Chilli. Crack open a bag of these around the campfire for a guilt-free pleasure after a long day of hillwalking.
Just go steady on the toasted marshmallows afterwards.Available from many sandwich, farm and health shops plus contract catering, higher education and premium high street health chains.