Pros: Makes the BEST popcorn!
Cons: Needs to be hand-washed
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Also posted on Epinions.com.
This is a review I’ve intended to write for more than a year now. A couple of years ago, we were lucky enough to receive a Whirley-Pop Stovetop Popcorn Popper as a Christmas present from friends. Before that we’d experimented with all sorts of popcorn makers and had never been able to settle on something. Now we have the perfect popper, and I’d never go back to a hot air-style popper after trying it.
Have you noticed that movie popcorn just doesn’t live up to our childhood memories? Maybe it’s our changing tastebuds; maybe it really isn’t as good any more. Either way, don’t you wish you could create perfect fluffy, flavorful popcorn at home? Actually, you can. And it’s easy.
The Whirley-Pop is a pot-shaped device, with a hinged lid. The lid has a stirring mechanism that you hand-crank while the popcorn cooks. You cook the popcorn in a bit of oil while cranking constantly, then dump it out and mix in your choice of salt and/or seasonings. Simple, quick, and easy. Because the device gets “seasoned” over time a bit like cast iron, you shouldn’t put it into the dishwasher. However, much like cast iron, it also cleans easily. Worst case, if you make one of the recipes that requires you to include sugar while cooking, just soak in hot water for a very short time before cleaning and it’ll come right off.
Which brings me to—the recipes. I’m a sweet popcorn fiend, and the recipes included with the Whirley-Pop make sweet popcorn a breeze. In fact, there’s a ton of sweet and savory recipes that will make you want to have popcorn a whole lot more often. Whether you’d rather have pizza flavored popcorn or cinnamon-sugar popcorn, you can do it yourself in minutes.
Okay, so it does take up a bit of space for such a single-purpose device, but it’s one of the single-purpose devices in our home that I wouldn’t want to give up. Popcorn can be a comparatively healthy snack if done right, and the Whirley-Pop gives you the chance to make it with ingredients that you can feel comfortable with. Do make sure that you read through the directions thoroughly, however, and follow them closely. The Whirley-Pop uses different heat settings and so on than a plain old pot, and it’s for good design reasons. If you don’t follow the directions, you won’t end up with that perfect popcorn!
So if you have friends who enjoy popcorn, perhaps you, too, can be amazing friends when the next holiday comes along, and give them a Whirley-Pop! Or skip the intermediary, and get one for yourself.