Salted Carmel Popcorn and Dark Chocolate Cookies
  • -For the popcorn
  • 60g popcorn kernels
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 110g unsalted butter
  • 110g soft light brown sugar
  • 40g golden syrup
  • ½ tsp Maldon sea salt flakes, plus extra
  • -For the cookies
  • 200g soft light brown sugar
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 220g unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ tsp vanilla paste
  • 2 eggs
  • 390g plain flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 200g 70% dark chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 150g salted caramel popcorn
  1. First, make the salted caramel popcorn by preheating the oven to 150oc/130oc fan. Line a baking tray with baking parchment and set aside. Place a large heavy bottomed pot like a le crueseut over a medium heat and add the oil. Once hot, add the popcorn kernels and place a lid on the top. Leave to pop, shaking the pan occasionally until there are around 10 seconds between each pop. Remove from the heat and pour the popcorn into a heatproof bowl, discarding any unpopped kernels.
  2. In a saucepan, melt the butter, sugar, golden syrup and salt together then boil rapidly for around 4 minutes. Pour over the popcorn and stir to coat each piece then scoop onto the prepared baking tray in one even layer. Sprinkle over some more salt and bake for 25-30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and pull the parchment onto a clean work surface. As the popcorn cools, break apart into smaller pieces. Once cool and hardened slightly, set aside 150g for the cookies and snack on the rest
  3. To make the cookies, place the brown sugar In the bowl of a stand mixer and briefly beat to break up any lumps. Add the caster sugar and beat again to incorporate then add the softened butter. Beat for around 5 minutes until light and fluffy – at first it will come together like biscuit dough but persevere, it will soften up.
  4. Add the vanilla and the eggs and beat until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl to ensure the mix is all incorporated. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour and bicarbonate of soda then fold into the sugar and butter mix.
  5. Add the chopped chocolate and salted caramel popcorn and gently fold together with a spatula or even with clean hands. Place in the fridge to rest for 30 minutes whilst you preheat the oven to 150oc/130oc fan and line a large baking sheet with baking parchment.
  6. Once ready to bake, scoop tablespoons of dough spaced well apart onto the tray and sprinkle with a little sea salt. Bake for 15-18 minutes until golden around the edges, then remove from the oven and leave to cool slightly. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely and repeat with the remaining cookie dough.
Recipe by Victoria Sponge Pease Pudding at