Microwave popcorn can be an easy snack to be enjoyed after dinner, with a movie or at any time of the day. Stringing popcorn around a Christmas tree is a traditional and fun decoration, and coating the popcorn with melted chocolate is a great way to make a holiday treat. Microwave popcorn is a fast way to accomplish all of these treats. Making microwave popcorn is efficient and generally safe, but there are some precautions.
Preparing the Popcorn and Selecting a Microwave Setting
To prepare a microwavable bag of popcorn, remove the plastic wrap and unfold the bag. One side of the package should be labeled with "This Side Down." Place this side facing downward in the center of the microwave oven and close the door. Different microwave ovens can cook popcorn differently, so the exact amount of time needed to cook the popcorn may vary. In general, you will want to set the temperature to high and adjust the timer to two minutes and 30 seconds. Some microwaves are equipped with a special setting for popcorn; in this case, simply select the popcorn button, and the temperature and time should be set for you. Stand near the microwave and listen as the popcorn pops. Stop the microwave when popping slows to two to three seconds between pops.
Retrieving the Popcorn
Open the microwave and let the bag sit to cool for at least 30 seconds. According to Orville.com, shaking the contents of the bag allows any popped kernels to become coated with butter and salt from inside the bag, which maximizes flavor. Open the bag with caution, pulling the top corners diagonally away from each other. Open the bag away from your face, keeping in mind that the popcorn and any unpopped kernels can be extremely hot. Avoid contact with any steam. Pour the popcorn into a large bowl, as the bag may be too hot to reach into directly.