Cravings Blog

Entries for September 2012

28
Friday Night is Family Football Night

In the fall in small towns and neighborhoods across the country, attention still turns to the local high school football field.  These young men on the gridiron hold the hopes and dreams of a new generation of heroes and capture the imagination of an entire community.  Family and friends gather to watch and cheer and stomp as the young men in their prime test their skills and stamina on a game in four quarters. 

But even more is going on there.  Parents volunteer to work in the concession stand or assist in the parking lot or the ticket booth, or they just serve as chaperone to a herd of younger kids flexing their social muscles as they crawl all over, around and under the stands. The school marching band performs their best to a steady drumbeat of excitement. The cheerleading and pep squads show-off their well-rehearsed routines and occasionally break into pure unrehearsed infectious enthusiasm for their home team.  Grandmas and grandpas, aunts and uncles arrive in their sensibly warm clothes and team colors to take it all in with a show of support for their families. 

In the two hours that make up this Friday night, the part we like the best is families having fun, no computers, no electronic games, just good family fun.  That’s the team we are rooting for … give me an F…A…M…I….L…Y!  Gooooo Family!

Who’s your team? 

Cravings Gourmet Popcorn is located in Old Town, the hippest area of Lansing, Michigan. We welcome visitors to our store and our website.  Enjoy our unique naturally seasoned flavors and vintage sodas, and when you can’t come in person know that we will ship your favorites to you anywhere nationwide.

Posted in: Pop Culture
27
Tasty Tailgate Traditions

For some, tailgating itself is overshadowing the sporting event it celebrates. At Cravings Gourmet Popcorn we’ve discovered that there is a competitive culinary one-upmanship that takes over tailgating to the absolute delight of those lucky enough to score an invitation. Try walking up and down the tailgating field for a new foodie sensation.  There are probably still a few tailgate menus serving up typical sub sandwiches and chips designed as a necessary counterpoint to large quantities of beer served by the gallon.

But you are just as likely to see creative tailgating like the one we stumbled upon at the Michigan State University season opening home game. This resourceful crew featured a huge seafood boil made with shrimp, mussels, oysters, crab, Andouille sausage, redskin potatoes and fresh corn on the cob. Other entrees at this little affair included catfish po'boys, crack spice chicken wings with fried okra and hush puppies. Their Cajun cheese dip was prepared with Andouille sausage cooked in bacon grease and amber ale, which was then tossed into a simmering pot of peppers, onions, and bacon braised chicken and, you guessed it more amber ale. This was all cooked down and added to a thinned creole pepper jack cheese.  This entire menu was topped off with a homebrewed craft beer.  Yum!

What are your tasty tailgate traditions?  Be a sport and tell us in the comments below. We really want to know.  Inspire us at Cravings Gourmet Popcorn and we may even go into the kitchen to design a new flavor based on your feedback!  In the meantime, make your new tailgate tradition begin with a stop at our store in Old Town to pick-up some of our best flavors for your big event.  If you think ahead to your next tailgate you can make a purchase online and depending on the amount you purchase, the shipping is FREE!

Where are you tailgating this weekend?  What’s on the menu?

Cravings Gourmet Popcorn is located in Old Town, the hippest area of Lansing, Michigan. We welcome visitors to our store and our website.  Enjoy our unique naturally seasoned flavors and vintage sodas, and when you can’t come in person know that we will ship your favorites to you anywhere nationwide.


 

Posted in: Entertaining Tips
24
The Real Smell of Fall

Smell that?  It is the smell of caramel apples, and to us at Cravings Gourmet Popcorn that is the quintessential smell of fall. It goes right along with the smell of leaves burning and a hint of cedar – no doubt from your sweater that you had packed away for the summer.

When caramel apple season arrives you can be sure that at least once or twice this season a package of three caramel apples will find its way into our grocery bag or be added to the order at the convenience store quick stop. 

Our favorite caramel apple starts with a crisp, tangy apple like a McIntosh or a Granny Smith. Smother it in a smooth bright, not too thick caramel, roll in some salty peanut bits and speared with a sturdy wooden stick that holds the last lick of caramel and apple to savor as a final taste.  Be honest, you suck the caramel and apple juice out that little wooden spear like it is marrow from a bone.

Making your own caramel apples is really not too hard and can be just the idea for a fun evening activity that gets the whole family involved.  Here is a simple recipe  for making your own caramel. Yeah, you could melt the prepackaged caramel candies – but that would be… just wrong.   Don’t forget the wax paper, sticks, and of course, apples (nuts optional). 

If you haven’t tasted it lately you should know that our caramel-flavored popcorn is a favorite at Cravings, stop in for your next treat. 

Cravings Gourmet Popcorn is located in Old Town, the hippest area of Lansing, Michigan. We welcome visitors to our store and our website.  Enjoy our unique naturally seasoned flavors and vintage sodas, and when you can’t come in person know that we will ship your favorites to you anywhere nationwide.

20
Bluesfest in Lansing – Always Something New

We love the blues as a music genre – there are so many classics to call out that the (number of acts) could easily fill every set with classic favorites.  However, the organizers of this music event make sure that our blues music appreciation includes something new.  As part of their contract every Bluesfest act must agree to bring an original work to the stage, one that has not been performed on any other festival stage to-date.  How cool is that?   

The Bluesfest 2012 is scheduled for September 21-22 on the streets of Old Town. This is just one of the Old Town events that bring thousands of new visitors to our doorstep every year.  We love seeing so many people out and about enjoying a good time in our neighborhood.

When you are in the area, make it a point to come in and visit for a minute.  Look for the giant popcorn box above our door – guarantee you can’t miss it!  If this is your first visit to Old Town, you are in for a treat.  This area is full of originals. 

This year in honor of Bluesfest, Cravings Gourmet Popcorn is featuring our Big Three Way Mix and two Mexican Coke for $9.00, a savings of fifty cents.  Visit our comments section and tell us your favorite blues song, we might just use it to name our special Bluesfest combo.

Cravings Gourmet Popcorn is located in Old Town Lansing, the hippest area of Lansing, Michigan and is the favorite snack at all of the Old Town festivals. Cravings Gourmet Popcorn can be purchased online and shipped to anywhere nationwide.

19
Popcorn for Dessert on this Special Day

On September 19 Cravings Gourmet Popcorn is celebrating a very special day. Did you know that National Butterscotch Pudding Day is September 19th?  It’s a simple holiday to remember because it is always celebrated on September 19, regardless of the day of the week on which it falls.  This year it is Wednesday – a perfect day to have a mid-week celebration. 

National Butterscotch Pudding Day does not have an official proclamation, and the traditions associated with this day are understandably limited.  If you check online the best you can find is a call to make and eat your own butterscotch pudding on this special day.  You won’t find any decorations or special cards to commemorate this event - it appears that the stores and retail associations did not get the memo about this wonderful holiday.

We thought that the word scotch in the name might refer to either Scottish origins or for the hard liquor of the same name – wrong on both counts.  One explanation for the word is its relationship to the meaning "to cut or score" for the word "scotch", as butterscotch candy must be cut into pieces, or "scotched", before hardening. It is also possible that the "scotch" part of its name was derived from the word "scorch". (Thank you Wiki!)

With ingredients like butter, sugar, and salt – how can you go wrong?  That combination has worked well for us at Cravings. One of our most popular sweet popcorn flavors is – you guessed it – butterscotch.  Come celebrate National Butterscotch Pudding Day with us! Let’s try tossing some popcorn on your pudding.

Cravings Gourmet Popcorn is located in Old Town, the hippest area of Lansing, Michigan. We welcome visitors to our store and our website.  Enjoy our unique naturally seasoned flavors and vintage sodas, and when you can’t come in person know that we will ship your favorites to you anywhere nationwide.

Posted in: Weird Stuff
19
Popcorn Like No Other – Why Craving’s Popcorn is Better

There are lots of specialty popcorn companies scattered across the country, but   when you visit them, the flavors seem to be eerily the same. Why? They all seem to be buying the same shake-on seasonings off the shelf. 

Our popcorn and vintage soda store, Cravings Gourmet Popcorn, is different.  The difference begins with not settling for off-the-shelf shake-on seasonings. When we add a new flavor to our offerings the seasonings have been created in our kitchen from scratch - beginning with our favorite recipes.  If we are going for a barbecue flavored popcorn you can be darn sure that the recipe started out as a real barbecue sauce.  And that, my friends, is why our popcorn is better.  Seasonings made from real food inspiration, real secret recipes, and no preservatives. 

POPCORN TRUTH SQUAD! There is one, just one, flavor of popcorn on our shelf that is made with a seasoning manufactured outside our store. I didn’t want to do it, but it was the one flavor that I couldn’t seem to capture.  Bet you can’t guess which one it is? 

The best thing about making our gourmet flavored popcorn is our crew of local fans that will taste test until we’ve got it right.  And, until it’s right that flavor does not go into our permanent line-up.

Cravings Gourmet Popcorn is located in Old Town Lansing, the hippest area of Lansing, Michigan.  Cravings Gourmet Popcorn can be purchased online and shipped to anywhere nationwide. 

Posted in: Gourmet Popcorn
13

We strongly believe that having a choice of flavors is good for business – but too much choice is just that - too much.  That is why at Cravings Gourmet Popcorn we go through a careful, and sometimes lengthy, process to add a new flavor of popcorn. 

Apple Cider Cinnamon





Apple Cider Cinnamon Popcorn is made
with real local apple cider
It all starts with a flavor idea or inspiration and then we go to work in the kitchen to create a recipe to match the inspiration. Here is where our customers come in, especially those that are close by the store in Old Town Lansing.  Once we have a batch ready for sampling we put the word out to our fans via Facebook, describing the new flavor and offering samples.

The samples are free, but not really. What we want from our fan taste-testers is brutal honesty. Without your feedback we don’t know what you really think – or what you really want.  Until you are satisfied, and we are too – a new flavor of popcorn is not added to our stock. 

And, at the same time, while we are considering adding a new flavor, we take a hard look at sales volumes of all of our current flavors. Flavors that seem to be declining in popularity will be put on a watch list for “retirement.”  So, if you have a favorite flavor that you think you can’t live without – let us know. 

Here it is – your chance to tell us your favorite flavor.  Go ahead, don’t be shy.

Cravings Gourmet Popcorn is located in Old Town Lansing, the hippest area of Lansing, Michigan.  Cravings Gourmet Popcorn can be purchased online and shipped to anywhere nationwide.

 

Posted in: Gourmet Popcorn
11

How did you spend your Labor Day weekend? There are those of us that crammed in the last “honey-do” home improvement projects over this past Labor Day weekend.  Maybe because we recognized that our school year schedule is about to begin and that our schedules were about to become impossibly busy.  And then there were those that spent the weekend from sun-up to sun-down squeezing all the summertime fun available out of this precious 3-day weekend. 

 
2012 Dragon Boat Races in Lansing, Michigan
photo courtesy Trumpie Photography, Lansing, Michigan
What impressed us the most are the people that took this time to cap-off the summer with a major accomplishment. Think of all the bike riders that decided that this would be the year that the DALMAC (Lansing to Mackinaw Four Day Bike Ride) would be crossed off their bucket list. Were you among the thousands of people that seized the once-a-year opportunity to walk the length of the mighty Mackinaw Bridge? Or were you part of 13 teams of Dragon Boat racers on mid-Michigan’s Grand River that said yes to a new and unusual experience being wedged into a colorful wooden boat with 20 other people paddling like crazy together to win a race.

Working, playing, reaching for a goal, experiencing something new – we hope during all of this there was at least a moment to reflect on the value of work. We love our work – every day brings a new opportunity to celebrate. 

Cravings Gourmet Popcorn is located in Old Town, the hippest area of Lansing, Michigan. We welcome visitors to our store or our website.  Enjoy our unique naturally seasoned flavors and vintage sodas, and when you can’t come in person know that we will ship your favorites to you anywhere nationwide. 

Posted in: Events