Cravings Blog

07
Cravings Celebrates Girls

March 10 – 16 is National Girl Scout week.  Nationally the Girl Scouts of USA has a membership of over 3.2 million girls and adults, and there are over 59 million women in the US today that are Girl Scout alumnae – that’s a lot of girl power!   The organization started on March 12, 1912 with its first meeting for 18 girls in Savannah, Georgia. The Girl Scouts was created to help all girls develop physically, mentally and spiritually.  Those principles still hold true plus the organization has continued to inspire young girls by being willing to tackle important social issues and to foster a commitment to diversity and inclusiveness.

At Cravings Gourmet Popcorn we celebrate girls and the Girl Scouts.  We remind all local troop leaders that our Community Popcorn Project is open to your troop.  To learn more about how Cravings can help go to http://www.facebook.com/CravingsCommunityPopcornProject

Plus, this year Cravings owner, Chad Jordan, is participating in the local annual Girl Scout Cookie Bake-off event as a celebrity chef.  The event is Thursday April 18th and we would love it if you would come out and support us and the Girl Scouts. Our challenge to participate is to create a dessert using Girl Scout Cookies and of course…popcorn.  To learn more about attending the fundraising event go to the Girl Scout Heart of Michigan website.

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: Events
04
Cravings Going Green

St. Patrick’s Day celebration ideas from Craving’s very Irish blogger, Katie Donovan.

Hmmm, imagine the crisp bite of crème de menthe combined with the sweet luscious taste of chocolate drizzled on top of our finest popcorn.  That’s what is in store for you beginning March 1st at Cravings Gourmet Popcorn.  You don’t need to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day for this special treat.  But, if you come in wearing green you can get $1.00 OFF our crème de menthe chocolate drizzle popcorn.

What is your St. Patrick’s Day tradition?  Do you wear green ---hoping to get kissed or pinched?  Eating your share of corned beef and cabbage or drinking more than your share of green beer?  Or – if you must party, how about creating a mashed potato bar party? 

That’s right a mashed potato party! I thought of this party several years ago and it was a real hit with my guests. It is easy to do …make one or two big batches of mashed potatoes.  I like serving one with super smooth mashed potatoes whipped with sour cream and another lumpier version made with redskin potatoes and garlic with some skins included.  Use your imagination to prepare lots of different toppings for your bar to dress up the potatoes.  Serve the potatoes in over-sized martini glasses (you can rent the glasses) for a little pizzazz. Enjoy the company of your guests while you feast on this ultimate comfort food.  Finish your party with some sweet treats from Cravings, like the crème de menthe chocolate drizzle popcorn!

Whichever way you decide to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, be sure to make it a safe one.  Looking forward to seeing you at Cravings!

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: Promotions
01
Oh the Places You’ll Go

 “You’re off to great places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So . . . get on your way!” This is the final line of the final book that Ted Geisel (pen name -Dr. Seuss) wrote.

March 2nd is the birthday of Dr. Seuss. He was not a real doctor, but he still made significant contributions to our lives.  Always a doodler, in college he was noticed by a fellow student. She suggested that he give up his idea of becoming a professor and become an artist. That student, Helen, would one day become his wife.  His artistic career started in advertising for Standard Oil Company. He later gained some notoriety for putting his artistic skills to work during the war effort by making films and animated shorts to train soldiers for World War II. 

In the 60’s Geisel was inspired by a book based on a report called Why Johnny Can’t Read. The report’s basic premise was that elementary reading books were boring to children.  His first children’s book The Cat in the Hat was commissioned by two publishing companies to serve as a beginning reader. Ted Seuss Geisel spent 53 years writing and illustrating instructive children’s books that delighted and educated children and their parents.  Many of his best works carried important messages of social importance.

He died in 1991. Shortly before his death, when Ted was asked if there was anything left unsaid, he pondered the question and finally responded: “The best slogan I can think of to leave with the U.S.A. would be: ‘We can . . . and we’ve got to . . . do better than this.”

At Cravings Gourmet Popcorn, we are inspired by the life and works of Dr. Seuss and encourage you to pick up a Dr. Seuss book for a little inspiration to apply to your life this Saturday, March 2nd.

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: Pop Culture
28
Ladies First For March Madness

It is only fitting that the Michigan girl’s high school basketball tournament is on the calendar first (see below), since it was a girl’s high school sport before it was adopted by the boys.  Basketball was invented at a YMCA in Springfield, Massachusetts because young men in their 20s and 30s were bored with plain old physical education.  The indoor game was played with balls of various sizes, peach baskets, and teams of varying numbers based on who was around.  The game proved to be so popular that it soon spread to YMCA s across the country with standardized rules.  Because there were few team sports for high school girls, many schools picked up basketball.  It wasn't until between 1905 and 1910 that basketball became a boy’s sport. 

High School Girls Basketball Tournament Schedule

District Tournament -- Feb. 25, 27 & March 1

Regional Tournament -- March 5 & 7

MHSAA Quarterfinals - March 12

MHSAA Semifinals - March 14-15

MHSAA Finals -- March 16

High School Madness

The Michigan Boy’s High School Tournament begins March 4th and reaches its exciting conclusion March 23rd with the Finals at the Breslin Center on Michigan State University’s campus.  Information about all High School sports in Michigan, including the complete Boys schedule, can be found at the website for the Michigan High School Athletic Association. 

Whether it is High School Girls Basketball or Boys Basketball, at Cravings Gourmet Popcorn we appreciate the efforts that these student athletes (and their families) make to participate in sports as part of their high school careers.  Following your favorite local team does create a bit of madness, but in a good way, and every once a while there is a student athlete that sparks the imagination of a community and earns a place in the hearts of so many.  Next time you find yourself at your local high school slow down as you walk by the trophy cabinet and take a closer look at the names, chances are some of those names will be familiar to you – maybe because it is the name of a community or business leader, or just maybe it is a name of a stellar player that went on to greater heights.  Maybe you will see  a name like Earvin Johnson. 

College Madness

For most, the real March Madness is associated with the NCAA, collegiate basketball.  NCAA Madness begins March 19th and ends April 8th.  If you want to understand what is happening for March Madness 2013, there is a great place online to get the schedule, read predictions, learn about ticket sales, and of course safely place bets.  This site is all about following your favorite collegiate team.  Might we suggest that instead of placing your hard-earned money on the line, how about a friendly wager where the winner gets a prize instead of cash …oh like maybe a Cravings Gift Card? 

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.

Image courtesy of pichart99thai at FreeDigitalPhotos.net



Posted in: Events
25
Good Popcorn, Good Works

Recently a customer walked into the Cravings Popcorn store in Old Town on a mission to buy some popcorn for his church youth group activity.  Cravings employee Adrienne, a Certified Tourism Ambassador by the Greater Lansing Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, is always curious about what brings customers in to the store. She knew that she could do better than just selling the customer a 1 gallon bag of popcorn.  “Are you familiar with our Cravings Community Popcorn Project,” she asked.  The customer was thrilled to find out that by just filling out a simple form on behalf of his non profit church group he would qualify to receive a Free Jumbo 5 gallon bag of Cravings Popcorn for the youth group event. 

Since Adrienne took responsibility for the Cravings Community Popcorn Project in July of 2012, over 30 nonprofit associations have participated by receiving a Jumbo bag, gift cards for auction, or specially packaged gift boxes.  The nonprofits agree to acknowledge Cravings on social media, share and tag photos, or include a Cravings logo in an event brochure or program.  “One of my favorite nonprofit events that we supported this year was the Mid-Michigan Creative Alliance; they took a Jumbo bag for their Halloween event.  They filled our popcorn into rubber gloves along with candy corn for the finger tips to make some creatively creepy table favors,” said Adrienne. 

If you are an events planner for your nonprofit and have an event coming up this year be sure to check out the Craving’s Community Popcorn Project.  You can reach Adrienne by emailing her at: donations@cravingspopcorn.com, or stop in to the Old Town Cravings store to get an application and chat with Adrienne about your event.

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: Events
21
Oscar Sunday is February 24th

No matter how you look at it the Academy Awards are a big deal.  There is high drama every year as we wait to learn the Academy Award nominees. Who doesn't like the movies? It is a competition that attracts bookmakers, it is a celebration of talent and imagination, it is a fashion show packed full of the most beautiful people in the world, it is a comedy platform for today’s most erudite host/hostess, it is a televised live variety show seen round the world, and now it is an online phenomenon with apps and websites that delve into the even the most minute details of the Awards.  It is the Oscars – the Academy Awards Nominations for Movies, Directors, Actors and Actresses, Screenplay Writers, Cinematographers, Costume Designers, and legions of people that call the movies their business.

But basically, it is about movies, movies that tell great stories – and what goes best with movies?  You guessed it! Popcorn!  In case you missed the details of this year’s nominated movies for Best Picture for the 85th Academy Award competition are, in alphabetical order:  

Amour

 Argo

 Beasts of the Southern Wild

 Django Unchained

 Les Misérables

 Life of Pi

 Lincoln

 Silver Linings Playbook

Zero Dark Thirty

Usually, as the Academy Award season heats up, I try to see as many of the movies nominated for Best Picture as I can before Oscar Sunday.  Right now I have only seen three of the nine.  What movie are you rooting for?  It looks like I am not going to get to see many of these movies at the theater, but the bonus for me is being able to look forward to movie nights in the comfort of my own home …with my favorite popcorn, Cravings!  Problem is I can be done with my popcorn before the movie trailers are done, its that good!

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: Pop Culture
18
Getting on the Bacon Bandwagon

Its official, people are crazy for bacon.  In December of last year this website was published featuring the most outrageous uses for bacon.  If you do a Google image search for bacon you will see bacon tattoos, bacon food constructions including a Christmas creche made entirely from bacon, and bacon food innovations like pancakes with bacon cooked into the middle.  There are bacon recipes for bacon flavored ice cream, bacon fudge, bacon cupcakes, bacon-wrapped turkey, and even a Bacon Freak website with tasty ideas like Bacon of the Month Club.  What will they think of next?

Cravings Gourmet Popcorn has jumped on the Bacon Bandwagon for salty/sweet snacks that feature bacon.  You simply have to try our Maple Caramel Popcorn with Hickory Smoked Bits of Bacon mixed together.  We guarantee that you, or some bacon lover (not Kevin Bacon) you know, will go whole hog (forgive us…can’t help ourselves) for this tasty combination. 

So the next time you bring home the bacon, make a stop at Cravings Gourmet Popcorn, get on the bandwagon and pick up our new Maple Caramel Bacon Popcorn, and really bring home the bacon!

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
14
Craving for a Cure to Cabin Fever?

If you look in the mirror and see the image of Jack Nicholson’s character in The Shining staring back at you with that crazed look and greasy hair, it is entirely possible that you are suffering from cabin fever.  Go ahead and take a moment to regroup: shower, shampoo, shave where necessary, put on some clean clothes, and then bundle up. That shiny thing in your garage is your car, get the keys, grab your wallet and get in the car!

Destination – Old Town! There is always something interesting to do, people to see and good things to eat.  Pop in to Aggie Mae’s for a sweet treat and some hot coffee.  If you haven’t checked out our neighbor, Meat, plan on stopping in for lunch – you've got to love a restaurant that has a name that promises no surprises. Well, maybe one surprise …surprisingly good meaty food to eat. 

The galleries in Old Town always deliver interesting arty things to see and buy.  Katalyst, Absolute, Creole, and Tallulah’s Folly and  are all doing their part to elevate our local arts and culture scene. 

If you are really adventurous you can poke around in Love Betty or Lamb’s Gate to find that mid-century mod treasure or just the right little piece of furniture to breathe new life into your home decor. 

If your therapeutic outing does not include retail purchases, you could try stretching some muscles at Hilltop Yoga (touch the top your leg, underneath that squishy stuff that’s muscle you feel). Or, just stop in to see the ladies of Grace and October Moon because visiting with them will change your day, change your attitude and change your mind.  If you are still feeling a little fuzzy try a little art therapy at Haze Ceramic Gallery, or if you don’t feel like making something maybe Haze will let you go out back and smash some castoffs.

Before you leave Old Town pop into our store Cravings Gourmet Popcorn, stick your head in first and do your best Jack Nicholson/Shining maniacal impression of “Heeere’s Johnny” and get 10 percent off your purchase. 

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: Pop Culture
11
Black History Month – Make History Now

We all remember some of the most celebrated early black inventors like George Washington Carver who invented peanut butter, adhesives, bleach, chili sauce, ink, instant coffee, linoleum, mayonnaise, paper, plastic, pavement, shaving cream, talcum powder and more.   Or Henry Blair, the second African American to receive a patent for a corn seed planter and a cotton planter, distinguished not only for his invention but for succeeding despite the fact that he could not read or write.

Often overlooked are some more contemporary innovators and inventors.  Mark Dean and co-inventor Dennis Moelle created a microcomputer system with controls for peripheral processing devices like disk drives, speakers, and scanners.   NASA engineer Lonnie G. Johnson made significant contributions in spacecraft design - but kids love him for his top selling toy invention the Super Soaker Water Gun.

And where would we be if Emmit McHenry hadn’t created a complex computer code making it possible for ordinary people like us to surf the web or have e-mails. He created what we know today simply as .com.  In 1992 his company, Network Solutions, earned a contract with the National Science Foundation Department.  Network Solution had the sole authority to develop and issue the Internet system for Web addresses.

For this year’s Black History Month celebration Nike is honoring three notable athletes for their social innovations with special edition shoes and clothing.  Soccer player Didier Drogba is recognized for his ongoing involvement in bringing solar light bulbs to impoverished areas in Africa.  Tennis player Serena Williams for her empowerment of young women, including the secondary school she helped build in Kenya.  Basketball star, Kevin Durant, is acknowledged for his support of his hometown recreation center for youth.  Proceeds from sales of the Nike Black History Month collection go to Big Brothers Big Sisters of America. 

This month at Cravings Gourmet Popcorn we celebrate all these innovators and inventors that have made history. Who do you know that is making history this month?  Will you make history?

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: Events
07
Love, Love, Love Chocolate … on Popcorn

You can thank the ancient Mayans and Aztecs for our love of chocolate.  Cocoa beans were a common currency 2000 years ago. It is said that cocoa beans infused with water created frothy chocolate drinks for special occasions and as sacrifices to the gods. Increasing chocolate’s popularity and its association with love and romance is attributed to the Aztec ruler Montezuma who believed that chocolate was an aphrodisiac and routinely drank it before entering his harem.  To this day scientists continue to debate the health benefits of chocolate and the effect of chocolate on emotions. But it is the Cadbury Brothers that we have to thank for creating the popular phenomenon of giving a gift of chocolate for the Valentine holiday.  In the late 1800’s the heart-shaped candy box was created by Richard Cadbury forever commercializing the holiday with the giving of sweets, especially chocolate.

Everybody loves chocolate!  Make sure that in February (before Valentines) you make a trip to our store in Old Town.  You can purchase unique chocolate and popcorn flavors for your sweetheart – or yourself. Beginning February 1st Cravings Gourmet Popcorn’s Chocolate Event features three new flavors: Cheesecake Drizzle, Melon Berry Drizzle, and Chocolate Cherry Drizzle.  For you long time chocolate and popcorn fans we continue to sell our Deluxe Drizzled Caramel (White Chocolate and Dark Chocolate) and Dark Drizzle (Dark Chocolate on Original Caramel corn).

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.

Image courtesy of ponsuwan at FreeDigitalPhotos.net





Posted in: Holidays
04
Mardi Gras – Purple, Green and Gold

There is a special mania surrounding the Mardi Gras (French for Fat Tuesday) season of celebrations emanating from its epicenter in New Orleans and spreading across the globe. These celebrations which culminate on Fat Tuesday, the day before the traditional Ash Wednesday and the beginning of the Lenten season, are bright, bawdy and maybe even a bit outrageous.  In the days leading up to Fat Tuesday there are lots of parades, costume parties and loads of decorations – most with the purple, green and gold theme.  There is much throwing of strands of beads and flashing of bare chests.

 It is said that the traditional colors of Mardi Gras – Purple, Green and Gold were selected in 1872 based on a suggestion from a visiting Russian Grand Duke because the colors evoked the heraldry of royalty.  Twenty years later the colors were affirmed with symbolic meaning that lasts to this day:  Purple – Justice, Green – Faith, Gold – Power.  

At Cravings Gourmet Popcorn we honor the season and the colors with our own Mardi Gras flavors which will be Plum (Purple) Lime (Green) and, Pineapple (Gold).  Be sure to come in and sample the flavors of Mardi Gras individually or in combination.  We think you’ll like the sweet and tangy combination.

Get in early to because after Fat Tuesday (February 12th) we give up the flavors for Lent!

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: Events
28
Super Bowl of Snacking – New Orleans Style

This year the Super Bowl is on February 3rd in New Orleans.  Super Bowl parties are always a great snacking event. This comeback for New Orleans puts us in the mood to explore snacking Super Bowl and New Orleans style.  For starters we went to the New Orleans Newspaper, The Times-Picayune, for some great local recipes. Rather than print out all of the recipes, we are providing a brief description and a link:

This recipe was suggested last year for the Saints and Lion’s game.  Chicken wings from New Orleans favorite Emeril Lagasse.

A crawfish bisque eggroll will offer the New Orleans seafood flair to your Super Bowl snacking.

New Orleans native Thelma Lewis brings us a classic “Pone” with sweet potato, butter, and cream.

Eula Mae Dore, a cook for a New Orleans family, shares this classic popcorn ball recipe from her cook book.

And, to close out our New Orleans snacking theme, we are bringing you a Buttery Cajun Popcorn recipe (below) from A Taste of Home. It tastes great and is a wonderful low calorie option weighing in at just 83 calories per cup:

Prep/Total Time: 15 min. Yield: 12 Servings

Ingredients

12 cups air-popped popcorn

1/4 cup butter, melted

2 tablespoons lime juice

4-1/2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning

4 to 5 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

Place popcorn in a large bowl. Combine butter and lime juice; drizzle over popcorn and toss to coat. Combine Cajun seasoning and cheese; sprinkle over popcorn and toss to coat. Yield: 3 quarts.

No matter who wins the Super Bowl, your guests will all be winners with some super snacks – “nawlins style.” Enjoy!  

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: Recipes
21
Let Corny Jokes Rule National Belly Laugh Day

Every year January 24th is National Belly Laugh Day.  The advocates for this special day truly believe that laughter is the best medicine.  Listed among the therapeutic qualities of a good old belly laugh are:

-Laughter appears to cause the tissue that forms the inner lining of blood vessels, the endothelium, to dilate or expand in order to increase blood flow.

-Laughter increases pain tolerance.

-It exercises facial, abdominal and chest muscles.

-Improves brain functioning.

-Laughing mixed together with the positive emotions of humor, and happiness lowers the stress hormones, corticosteroids and epinephrine. The release of growth hormone and endorphins plays a role in lowering the stress hormones.

At Cravings Gourmet Popcorn we would like to get the day and the belly laughs rolling by proclaiming it “Corny Joke Day” for National Belly Laugh Day.  To get us started here is popcorn “Corny Joke” excerpted from a blogger Sam Wilson on kids jokes from her blog.

I am going to leave you with my son’s favorite kiddy jokes of the moment.”  Six-year-old Benjamin:

What’s the difference between popcorn and pea soup? Anyone can pop corn.

Here is one from www.Joke Buddha.com:

Peanuts! Popcorn!

President Ronald Regan told this joke about Fidel Castro: Castro was addressing a large audience in Cuba, and he began, "They accuse me of intervening in Angola..." and a man going through the audience called out, "Peanuts! Popcorn! “Castro went on: "They say I'm intervening in Mozambique..." and the same loud voice shouted, "Peanuts! Popcorn! Castro continued: "They say I'm intervening in Nicaragua..." and the voice yelled again, "Peanuts! Popcorn! By this time Castro was boiling mad and he sputtered, "Bring that man who is shouting 'Peanuts! Popcorn!' to me, and I'll kick him all the way to Miami. And everybody in the audience started shouting, "Peanuts! Popcorn!"

What are your favorite “corny” jokes?

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.
(Photo credit: Freedigitalphotos.net)

Posted in: Pop Culture
17
No Accounting for Taste

Did you ever see the Saturday Night Live classic skit on sour milk? One of the actors opens the refrigerator and pulls out a carton of milk and takes a swig and then promptly spits the milk out as it has gone sour. He makes a big fuss about it to his friend who takes the carton to taste for himself …and, of course, spits out the sour milk.  This gag continues and gets funnier and funnier as more and more people feel compelled to taste for themselves. 

If you have been in our store you will notice that we stock a wide variety of soda pops, some hard to find classics plus a nice variety of unusual flavors.  Included in the unusual flavors category are: buffalo wing barbecue-flavored soda, bacon-flavored soda, and celery-flavored soda.  In our opinion these are some of the grossest tasting sodas …EVER!

Grossest Flavors, Top Sellers

It might be the novelty of the name that compels people to buy and sample these gross sodas. Or, maybe it is the SNL effect where people need to experience the taste for themselves. We can’t say that we have had anyone spew their gross soda out while in the store, the health department would definitely frown on that…and so would we.  But, what baffles us is the fact that these gross soda flavors are among our top sellers in the store.  Whether you buy it because you love it, or have other reasons for purchasing such as for a gag gift…let us just say thank you very much!

At Cravings we will definitely keep stocking what sells the best.  Have you tried our Sweet Corn soda? Try it, you’ll like it!

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: Soda Pop
14
Popping Popcorn at Home - The Right Way

Yup! There is a right way and a wrong way to pop corn. It all starts with quality seeds. The kind of seeds you choose will determine both the flavor and the texture of the popped corn.  New seeds, commonly called baby seeds will yield a smaller and crunchier corn with a nutty flavor. More mature seeds will have a milder sweeter flavor and a chewier/softer texture.  Our favorite vendor for quality popping corn seeds is Amish Country Popcorn, we carry of full line of their products in our store.  You will only find non-genetically modified popping corn in our store – just a good idea to avoid a product that has been altered to create its own pesticide.  Look for Non-GMO on the package.

We highly recommend using the Whirley Popper.  This stovetop device calls for you to be present to tend to the popping by cranking, listening and smelling. All in all, this is a pleasant experience, especially if you engage help.  You guessed it – Whirley Poppers are available in our Old Town Lansing store.

You need oil for popping the corn, from our point of view the only real choice is coconut oil. Once you have it in your home you are going to find lots of other uses for coconut oil which go far beyond cooking in the kitchen. This website presents 122 uses for coconut oil. Who knew?

We’ve said it before, naked popcorn tastes good and is a perfectly healthy choice, but, if you want, there are oh so many wonderful flavors you can add to your popped corn. Watch for more on this topic later this week or next.

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
10
Grandma Katie Has a Popcorn and Movie Date

Cravings owner, Chad Jordan, was gracious enough to share a Whirley Pop Popcorn Popper with me so I could experience the fun of popping corn first hand.  I was briefly schooled on the various options available in the store for popping seeds and selected the variety mix. 

At the first available opportunity I made a movie date with my grand-daughter Annalise.  We had a great time getting set-up and reading the directions (These were very simple).  The one thing that surprised me was the suggestion that we start the popping process from a pan that is not pre-heated. Annalise was the designated crank turner to keep those seeds moving in the coconut oil.

Because I chose the variety mix with several different kernel sizes, the recommended three minute cooking time was not exactly right. But, the good thing is you can hear the popping action very well and you definitely know when the popping is done. 

We added just a little melted butter and some sea salt and sat down to watch the original Muppet Movie, a free film online. While Anna liked the movie, it was my son and I that really enjoyed this classic. We marveled at the technological feat it was for its time and also the awesome cast of big name stars assembled to be part of the movie.  Did you know that Orson Welles was in the Muppet Movie?

The popcorn was so good that it was gone before the movie was over and there was not one un-popped kernel in the bottom of our bowls.  The variety mix definitely delivered a lot of different flavors and textures, but I am thinking next time we will try two separate batches of seeds and do a taste comparison.  Plus, now that I know how easy the Whirley Pop is to operate, I plan on creating some of my own seasonings recipes and popping more corn at home.

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: Family
07
Popcorn Seasoning - Be the Gourmet

The best way to learn how to create your own unique gourmet flavors for your popcorn is to review some existing recipes. We have selected, from Popcorn.org, three low-fat or no-fat recipes for flavoring your popcorn at home.  Look at these recipes closely for inspiration and make your changes. Another tip that was suggested in some recipes: use egg-whites as a no-fat alternative to adhere flavors to the kernels.

Dilly Lemon Munch

Yield: 2 quarts

Ingredients

2 quarts popcorn popped

2 tablespoons shredded lemon peel

1 teaspoon dill weed

Optional: 1/2 teaspoon low-sodium salt

Directions

Toss popcorn with lemon peel and dill weed.

Flavor enhances as popcorn stands.

Cheesy Popcorn

Yield: 10 Cups

Ingredients

2 tablespoons garlic flavored or vegetable oil (We recommend coconut oil)

1/2 cup popcorn kernels

1 tablespoon melted butter, optional

2 tablespoons nutritional yeast or brewer’s yeast (found at health food stores, adds a cheese-like flavor without the calories or fat)

1 teaspoon curry powder, optional

Directions

In a large, heavy-bottomed pot (with a lid), place oil and about 3 popcorn kernels.

Heat over a medium-high heat until you hear a kernel pop. Add remaining popcorn; cover.

Once corn begins to pop, shake pot constantly over heat. When popping slows, remove pot from heat and transfer popcorn to a serving bowl. Pour butter over popcorn, if desired, and toss.

Sprinkle yeast and curry powder, if desired, over popcorn and toss to distribute evenly.

Serve immediately or store in an air-tight container.

Chili Lime Popcorn Snack Mix

Yield: 1 quart

Ingredients

1 quart popped popcorn

1 teaspoon brewer’s yeast powder (or nutritional yeast; available in health food stores)

1 teaspoon lime juice

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions

Preheat oven to 300° F.

Spread popcorn on a baking sheet.

Sprinkle yeast powder, lime juice, chili powder and salt over popcorn.

Heat about 7 minutes and toss just before serving. Serve warm.

 

Hope you enjoy these seasoning ideas and are inspired to create your own. Send your own recipes along in the comment section.

 

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
03
Fitness for the New Year

Okay, it’s here, the New Year and time for a new you. Maybe you've heard it before, but getting fit is usually a combination of the right food and the right fitness regime.  If you have a ways to go before you can claim a healthier life, here are a few good pieces of solid fitness advice to get you started:

Set Goals – We know you've heard how to set goals a million times. But where most people go off the rails is being too ambitious. You are far better to start with “baby steps” to measure your success.  We have a friend who started running three years ago. She had a very smart trainer with her to help her stay focused on those baby step goals, offering loads of encouragement along the way. Early in her training her goals were: walk for 5 minutes, run for 1 minute. It was a gradual climb to continuous running for a number of minutes, and then an increase in intensity.  Three years later she has run a 5K, has set her sights on a half-marathon, and continues to run every other day.

Exercise in Short Bursts – Fitness expert and TV star, Jackie Warner, suggests shorter, more intense workouts. Shorter time frames seem easier to work into your schedule, and greater intensity will have a longer lasting effect on your body over the course of the day.

Track Your Workouts – Keep a log, use an online tool, write little shorthand notes on your calendar.  Anything that will help you remember, what you did and whether you thought it worked, and how you felt (good or bad).  Over time this record is solid proof of your commitment, evidence that you have made progress, and incentive to keep going.

Change Your Playlist – We interpreted this piece of advice two ways. First, if you like to use music during your workouts, consider changing your playlist occasionally to create a new burst of energy to move you to the next level.  Second, consider the playlist of negative thoughts you have running through your head. These are those deep dark secrets of self-talk about your lack of ability or unworthiness.  Dumping this negative self-talk and changing to a playlist of lighter more positive and life affirming messages is another interpretation.

Now on to the food in the fitness and food combination, post work-out snack suggestions from Fitness Magazine call for eating to replenish lost energy with some healthy combinations of protein and carbs. Protein to re-build muscles and carbohydrates to create a fast energy burst. 

This just in for snacking in general, there is new research on popcorn as the perfect snack food. “Popcorn may be the perfect snack food. It’s the only snack that is 100 percent unprocessed whole grains. All other grains are processed and diluted with other ingredients, and although cereals are called ‘whole grain,’ this simply means that over 51 percent of the weight of the product is whole grain. One serving of popcorn will provide more than 70 percent of the daily intake of whole grain. The average person only gets about half a serving of whole grains a day, and popcorn could fill that gap in a very pleasant way,” said researcher Joe Vinson PhD, while delivering report to scientific community at annual conference.  To read more visit this site.

And finally, we offer a shout-out to our favorite personal fitness trainers at Iron Quest Fitness in Lansing. These people are well-versed on the right kinds of fitness and food combinations for people of all fitness levels. Take a look at their website to learn more about how they work.

Make it a fit and fabulous New Year!

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: Pop Culture
01
Snow Day Survival Kit

Here is a good idea. Save one of the bigger/nicer boxes that will be in plentiful supply from Christmas gifting.  And, on one of those last days with the kids at home for the Christmas break, task your family with creating a Snow Day Survival Kit. Take the box and make decorating the box your first step in creating a Snow Day Survival Kit. Next use your imagination to fill the box. Here is a list of idea starters:


                - Favorite family games that have been tucked away for a long time

                - An idea checklist of fun inside activities and outside activities

     - Put a list of household chores that need doing but never get done and create a fun challenge and reward for knocking one of these off the list

     - Visit the dollar store and load up on interesting finds to be used in a craft project

     - Load the box with new crayons, markers, glue sticks. 

     - Ideas for an Epic Creative Challenge (Put on a show; Write a play; Shoot and edit a movie)   

                - Ingredients for some kid-safe kitchen activities.   

                - Scrap booking materials to update family photo albums

These are just a few ideas on things you can put in your Snow Day Survival Kit. Once you have your kit assembled tuck it away and don’t pull it out until you have a snow emergency! Keep Cravings Gourmet Popcorn in the loop, we want to know what you would add, so make a comment to add to the list, and if you take up the challenge take a few pictures and send them along.

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: Family
29
Create New Year’s Eve Family Tradition

Make your New Year celebration meaningful and full of fun. Here are a few ideas for new family traditions for the New Year.

Ultimate Family Game Night – Invite more extended family or close family friends to make this event more exciting. Set up different gaming stations throughout your home with a variety of game favorites. Tap the organizer in your family to structure a way to create teams and competition that will keep the game night moving to a fun ending with some silly prizes.  Supply liberal amounts of Cravings Popcorn.

Create a New Year’s Light Ceremony - Make your New Year’s Eve family celebration a chance to reflect, resolve and renew.  Plan an event with Candles, Pomp and Circumstance, and Compliments. Use the candles to burn slips of paper with old habits or bad events you want to let go. Create a candle lighting ceremony to shine a light on each of your New Year’s Resolutions.  Close the ceremony with written compliments to yourself and to each of your family members – Read aloud or share privately.  End the evening with hugs all around.

Write Letters to your 2013 New You - Create a special New Year’s gift of stationery and writing utensils to share with your family members at a special dinner. Over dinner present the gifts and decide what the format of the letter will be, depending on the ages of your family members modify the structure. For example, help everyone imagine how they will feel about certain accomplishments or milestones that may occur in 2013 and ask them to write a letter of congratulations to themselves.  Finish the evening by sealing, addressing and stamping the envelopes. Then pencil a receive date on the back of the envelope. Give to a trusted friend to post at the appropriate time.  

Plan a Movie Marathon – Pick a theme for the types of movies to be part of your New Year’s Movie Marathon. Create a poster with the movie name and times that will accommodate the number of movies you wish to include in the marathon. End your marathon with a family dinner and movie discussion on New Year’s Day.  Look for common themes, compare and contrast the movie messages, opportunities for alternative endings, and a guaranteed lively discussion.   Don’t forget the Cravings Popcorn!

Happy New Year from our family to yours! 

Cravings Gourmet Popcorn

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: Family
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