During a recent visit to Harry and David while on vacation, my children were introduced to "Moose Munch." This is Harry and David's name for a yummy concoction of popcorn, nuts, chocolate and more. Rather than buy them a bag of "Moose Munch", I decided to try to copy it. The results of my endeavor are recorded here.
I started by making caramel popcorn. You can use plain microwave popcorn for your recipe, but I had fun making it the way I remember my Mother doing it: on the stove!
You need 1 to 2 gallons of prepared popcorn. Put the popcorn in a large bowl and set aside.
In a sauce pan combine 2 c. brown sugar, 1 c. butter and 1/2 c. corn or maple syrup.
Bring to a boil and allow to slow boil for 5 minutes without stirring.
After 5 minutes, remove from heat and add 1/2 t. baking soda, 1/2 t. salt, and 1 t. vanilla.
Pour this ooey-gooey brew over the popcorn and toss. Then, lay the coated popcorn on a greased cookie sheet (or the cooking world's greatest invention: The DeMarle Silpat).
Doesn't that ooey-gooey golden glow just make you salivate? Go start popping your popcorn now and you can have some of your own in about an hour!
Place in a 250 degree oven and bake for 1 hour, stirring every 20 minutes.
Set aside your caramel popcorn for now and compile the rest of your Moose Munch ingredients. You can really add in whatever you want here. I chose mini marshmallows, peanuts, and chocolate chips. I imagine that you can also use pieces of graham crackers, almonds, pecans, butterscotch chips, m&ms, and pretzels.
Spread half of the caramel popcorn in a single layer on waxed paper (or the cooking world's greatest invention: The DeMarle Silpat). Add the nuts, pretzels, and whatever else you prefer to the popcorn.
Melt chocolate coating (or almond bark or chocolate chips or any other thing your creative self wants to melt) and pour over the popcorn. My kiddos and I grouped the popcorn, nuts, etc. into clumps which I then coated with chocolate.
However, I think next time (and there WILL be a next time), I will just pour the chocolate over the entire layer.
After the chocolate coating hardens, break it apart in to bite size pieces. Combine it with the other half of the caramel popcorn and store in large storage bags.
This very yummy and addictive snack is a big hit with the kiddos and would be great for class parties, fall festivals and more!
One other note: I think I've decided to leave out the mini marshmallows next time. After a couple of days of storage, they seem to make the other ingredients soft and stale. I like snacks like this on the crunchy side!
Yum! I'm going to try that this week with the girls!
THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR SHARING THIS. THIS RECIPE IS EXACTLY WHAT I AM LOOKING FOR AND I LOVE THE PHOTOS.
Working at Harry and David, I do have to say your recipe is the closest I've seen.
Thank you so much for sharing your experience and the recipe I wanted. I am thinking ahead to Christmas! What a great stocking stuffer. MC/Erie, PA
I am home with my son who is all but recovered from strep (ugh!) but our caramel popcorn is in the oven, and we are very excited!! Thanks for sharing!
I've made several batches of this now and it is terrific! Outside of my oven that cooks hot (so I've altered to turning every 10 minutes at 225), it turns out perfectly. My favorite mix so far is mini M&Ms with melted mint chips.
Thank you so much for this recipe! It worked out perfectly and made a great birthday treat for my mother (who is addicted to Moose Munch) - we made gourmet Moose munch with Godiva and Ghirardelli chocolate. Thanks again!
I made this at Christmas and it was a hit. My father-in-law can be quite picky can't wait for me to make it again. My son who is in the Navy also had me make it for him on our visit to see him. I am making it again for Valentines Day as gifts to my loved ones. Kudo's on a perfect recipe.
Thanks for sharing your recipe. Do you have any suggestions on meltling the chocolate chips? I've made this twice now and both times, my melted chocolate doesn't harden well when left overnight to cool. The chocolate remains messy and smears all over the bags I put the mix into. Maybe I'm doing something wrong...I've seen other recipes where the recipes says to add shortening to the chocolate chips- I've done both..with shortening and without and I can't get it to harden over the mixture. Thanks!
Dear Anonymous, I have discovered that the darker the chocolate, the better it hardens. I suggest semi-sweet or special dark chocolate chips. I have also noticed, for whatever reason, that store brand chocolate chips work better as well (perhaps it is the paraffin or other filler).
I used your recipe to make Moose Munch and gave it out as Christmas gifts! Everyone loved it! I even decorated my own containers to give it out in.
For chocolate to firm up I have been told if you want to use "real" chocolate (will contain cocoa butter)and not temper it, it needs to be mixed with some "imitation" chocolate (will contain palm or some other hydrogenated oil), which allows it to harden.
Two parts "imitation" chocolate to one part "real" will do the trick. At holiday time you can often find these chunks of chocolate at the grocery stores. This formula works for candies you dip also. Thanks for the recipe - it's in the oven!
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