Your guide to choosing the best popcorn maker at home
With the gradual transition in the recent period from watching movies in cinemas or on traditional televisions towards the use of integrated home theater systems , many people prefer to complete the integrated cinema experience within the home by adding popcorn as well, and with popcorn machines being faster, more reliable and even more healthy than The traditional way, it has become an urgent need for many today.
How to choose the right popcorn machine for your needs?
Choosing the appropriate popcorn machine is not completely difficult, as the criteria for choosing it are quite simple compared to other machines, but it needs some basic criteria for choosing it due to the multiplicity of types and methods of work on the one hand, in addition to the difference in size and even the quality of popcorn made in it. Anyway, the basic criteria for choosing a popcorn machine are:
1- Popcorn machine capacity and preparation speed
Today’s popcorn machines are available in a variety of capacities, from 4 ounces of corn for the smaller variety to 16 ounces of corn for the larger variety intended to serve a large number of people. In the normal case, one meal of popcorn for one person consists of one ounce of corn, so on average, the size needed for the popcorn machine can be calculated according to the number of people that the machine will serve. While a small family needs a machine with a capacity of only 4 ounces, larger families or groups of users may need a machine They come in 8 or 10 ounce capacities, with larger options usually used for commercial purposes.
he capacity of a popcorn maker is important with popcorn usually eaten hot, and with an average duty cycle of 3 minutes, using a small machine in multiple stages isn’t really a good option. Also, the average speed of the machines does not mean that they all work at the same speed, as some types require a longer period of time to prepare the popcorn, apart from the delay, as keeping the popcorn in the machine for a longer period than usual makes it partially lose its crunchy texture.
2- The size of the popcorn machine
Size is one of the main criteria for choosing popcorn machines, as it determines how easy it is to pack and the place it occupies on the kitchen table or in the home theater room on the one hand, and it also determines to a large extent the quality of the popcorn made as well, its temperature and the amount of fat in it.
Small popcorn machines are usually water jug-like in appearance and gradually and continuously eject ripened popcorn from the top. This method is very good in terms of the popcorn being fresh and crunchy, but it is not completely ideal in terms of temperature, as the popcorn coming out of the machine cools while the rest of the popcorn matures, which is not really good, especially for large quantities.
On the other hand, the large popcorn machines maintain a high and uniform temperature of the popcorn, as they keep the entire amount of popcorn inside them until maturity, but in return they have a higher probability of the popcorn being less crunchy due to its prolonged exposure to the butt inside. In any case, larger machines are usually better in terms of popcorn output, and if you have the space needed for them or the size is not important, they are the best option.
3- A popcorn machine that works on gas or on electricity?
Making popcorn requires high heat and a small amount of oil to complete the process, and with popcorn being one of the most popular snack foods, many popcorn machines have appeared that rely on electricity instead of gas to make it because electricity is more practical and safer as well. However, both types have their advantages and disadvantages.
As for the machines that use gas, they are very large in size and are usually old as well, and their use of gas means that the heat is not distributed uniformly, as is the case in electricity, which makes them need a greater amount of oil compared to the amount of corn used. This greater use of oil makes their popcorn creamier and tastier (for most people’s preferences) but less healthy in that it contains more saturated fat and calories.
Modern machines use electricity almost constantly, it is the most common type today and all small home popcorn machines are with a few exceptions. The use of electricity in these machines means a uniform distribution of heat and less need for oil during the preparation of popcorn, and thus the popcorn is much healthier in that it contains less amounts of saturated fats, but it lacks the distinctive taste of popcorn prepared using gas and a larger amount of oil.
4- Do you need a traditional looking machine?
This option does not actually affect the quality or taste of popcorn, but rather is due to personal preferences only? As everyone probably knows or remembers the small popcorn carts that used to roam the streets, and although this design takes up a large area of the home theater room, it is a distinctive aesthetic addition, especially for those who love old pieces, as some companies are now producing popcorn machines with a traditional shape, but with dependence on electricity. It is important to note that these machines cost a lot of money compared to regular and small machines, but it is justified as a decoration tool in addition to being a popcorn machine.
In the end, for most needs, an electric popcorn machine with a capacity of 6 ounces of corn is quite suitable, but for more or less people, taste preferences, and health preferences, other sizes or types can be chosen, noting that popcorn machines are generally cheap and investing a large amount to buy a machine Popcorn is not usually a wise choice.