The Clockmaker's Caramel Coated Popcorn (A Haunted Recipe)

Total Time
Prep 5 mins
Cook 10 mins

In 1921, a German born clockmaker quit his well respected job to open a popcorn stand in Chicago’s Wicker Park District. The clockmaker’s typical fare was freshly popped popcorn drizzled with warm butter and sprinkled with salt; but his favorite, and most beloved popcorn, was his caramel coated popcorn. The recipe he used to make it was given to him from his only true love, who tragically died four years earlier during World War I. The tattered and torn recipe, which was scribbled on the inside of an old playbill, was carefully framed and sealed in an exquisite frame. The clockmaker faithfully took the framed recipe with him everywhere he went. By the summer of 1924, the clockmaker’s caramel coated popcorn had captivated the entire city’s attention; everyone was frantically lining up at his busy stand to buy the sweet, sticky confection. A few months later, just as the clockmaker was preparing to close his stand for the day, a small fire ignited near the stove. The clockmaker instinctively ran out to call for help. When he returned, just seconds later, he remembered leaving the framed recipe hanging on the wall. The clockmaker quickly ran into the burning stand to retrieve the recipe, but he never made it out. When the fire inspectors went into the charred ruins to investigate the accident, they found the clockmaker’s frame lying in a pile of smoking debris. The frame was in pristine condition; not a dent, nor a blemish, could be seen on it. However, the recipe was gone. The recipe for the clockmaker’s caramel popcorn recently surfaced and is beginning to circulate around the globe. Unfortunately, many people think the recipe is haunted because it is believed that if your clock stops running after making the recipe it’s because the clockmaker has paid you a visit in hopes of reclaiming his long, lost recipe. NOTE: This recipe, as written, results in a sticky, chewy caramel popcorn. If you prefer a crunchier caramel popcorn, bake it in the oven at 250 degrees for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. In a LARGE pot, heat the margarine, brown sugar, Karo syrup, and salt together over medium heat.
  2. While stirring, bring mixture to a boil and allow to boil for five minutes.
  3. Remove from heat.
  4. Add baking soda and vanilla.
  5. Mix well.
  6. Pour over freshly popped popcorn.
  7. Stir until the popcorn is well coated.
  8. Enjoy!


Most Helpful

very yummy. i halfed the recipe, cooking the caramel mixture in the microwave instead of the stove top. takes about 2 minutes. i used 8 cups of popcorn. it was not too sticky and not to hard, just right! this is a keepr. i couldn't even wait for it to cool before digging in. p.s. try putting it in a big brown bag after it has all been stirred together and then microwaving for 1 1/2 minutes. It makes each kernel indiviually caramelized and not sticky at all.

Cher Oliver March 07, 2010

This is an amazing recipe, I have made it for myself and my siblings and it's so good! I definately like cruncy caramel popcorn so I baked it for an hour at 250 degrees and it was delicious! Another thing me and my little sibling have done is add peanuts when it's sticky and then roll in popcorn balls, anyway you do it's just yummy!

Catygurl May 29, 2010

Mmm. This was just the type of caramel popcorn I was craving! I used 10 cups of popcorn - next time I think I'll use between 12 and 15. It makes a very sticky caramel corn with only 10 cups! 12/09 Made this again with about 14 cups of popcorn and it was perfect - just sticky enough to make popcorn balls with. (I should mention I used hard margarine both times I've made this.)

CassiaDawn December 23, 2009

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