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Cacio e pepe popcorn

I served this wonderful snack for a special birthday movie night and it was such a bit hit ! Hot popcorn with that addictive Italian combination of cheese, salt and pepper – an adult fix to any movie night.  
Super easy to make, just master your popcorn making skills and throw in the flavours.
Recipe based on one by Giada De Laurentiis on the Food Network channel.

Pictured: Cacio e pepe popcorn

½ cup popcorn kernels
Either air popped in a machine or cook in 2 tbsp vegetable oil
Garlic butter -
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 garlic clove, peeled and whole
Cheese and seasoning -
½ cup finely grated parmesan cheese
½ cup finely grated pecorino cheese
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
¼ tsp salt or ½ tsp sea salt

I like to grate and prepare the cheese first so I can throw it into the popcorn while it is just cooked and hot. And have the salt and pepper measured and ready.
Then prepare the melted butter – warm a small pan with the butter, oil and throw in the garlic clove – let it melt and infuse with garlic for a good 5 minutes, then remove the garlic clove.
Have your serving boxes or bowls ready. And a large bowl to mix it all in.
Prepare the popcorn either in the popcorn maker as per instructions or have a heavy based large saucepan ready or a Dutch oven – on a medium to high heat, melt the vegetable oil til the oil is shimmering, and throw in the popcorn kernels. Cover with the lid straight away and shake the pan every minute or so to move the kernels around in the oil and stop the bottom layer burning at any point. Once you start to hear popping corn, turn the heat down to medium and shake more often until the popping starts to slow down to only a few pops left.
Pour the popcorn into the large mixing bowl, drizzle over all the melted garlic butter, throw in the cheeses and seasoning and mix it all gently together til well coated. Serve straight away!
Makes 6 – 8 cups popcorn