Heather Barnett is a freelance writer and foodie whose work has been featured in blogs, websites, magazines, and TV and radio ads. She spends her free time relaxing with her soulmate, Keith; her dog, Mosby "The Fly Slayer;" and Felix th...
Making and decorating popcorn balls is a fun way to get kids involved in the kitchen. Whether you use your favorite recipe or try ours, you're sure to have a blast creating these crunchy treats.
Marshmallow popcorn balls
10 cups natural popcorn, popped
2 bags mini-marshmallows (8 ounces each)
1/2 cup unsalted butter
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Food coloring (optional)
In a saucepan, heat the mini-marshmallows, unsalted butter, vanilla extract and sugar until blended, stirring constantly. (To make colored balls, add two or three drops of food coloring.) Bring to a boil for 60 seconds. Remove from heat, but don't let it cool.
In a large mixing bowl, pour the mixture over the popcorn and fold carefully using a spatula until well coated.
When it's cool enough to touch, let the kids shape the mixture into balls using their hands. Place the balls on a cookie sheet covered with wax paper.
Let the balls cool before decorating.
Make edible glue by whisking together equal amounts of water and meringue powder (available at craft, baking supply and grocery stores). Set out an assortment of candies (red-hots, licorice or red whips, chocolate chips, edible glitter etc.) and let your kids use their imaginations. They can make silly faces or go with a holiday or movie theme.
For Halloween, make popcorn ball spiders using black licorice for the legs and round candies for the eyes.
Make clowns using sugar cones decorated with colorful candies for hats.
Make popcorn balls into gifts for their friends by placing the creations in plastic sandwich bags and tying them off with bows.