Everybody loves popcorn—the granddaddy of all snack foods.  Discovered in the Americas thousands of years ago, popcorn has captivated people for centuries with its mythical, magical charm.  Yet through the ages, popcorn has remained relatively unchanged.  Popcorn is a seed, which just happens to do some nifty things when heated. And it can make your holiday treats pop!
Jingle Balls

Yield: 12 Cups


Ingredients


• 12 cups popped popcorn


• 6 tablespoons butter or margarine


• 3 cups mini marshmallows


Directions


1. Spray large mixing bowl lightly with cooking spray. Add popcorn.


2. Spread plastic wrap on cookie sheet; set aside.


3. In medium saucepan, melt butter and marshmallows; stir until mixture is smooth. Stir in peppermint extract. Pour over popcorn, mixing until well  coated. Let cool 2 minutes.


4. Spray hands with cooking spray and form popcorn mixture into 3-inch balls. 5. Gently press colored sugar onto balls. Let sit on prepared cookie sheet until cool and set.



Holiday Wreath Popcorn Treats

Yield: Serves 8 (5-inch wreaths)


Ingredients


• 3 quarts popped popcorn


• 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter or 


   margarine


• 3 cups miniature marshmallows


• 3 tablespoons (1/2 of a 3-ounce 


   box) lime gelatin dessert mix


• Decorations: small red candies, 


   jellybeans, red fruit leather, etc.


Directions


1. Spray a large mixing bowl lightly with cooking spray and place popcorn inside.


2. In a medium saucepan, melt butter over low heat.  Stir in marshmallows and gelatin dessert powder until marshmal-lows are melted and mixture is   smooth.  Pour over popcorn and  mix well until coated.


3. Spray hands with cooking spray and press firmly to form into 9-inch logs and then bend to form ‘wreaths’. 


4.Place ‘wreaths’ on wax paper.  Press candy decorations onto wreath to decorate; add a ‘ribbon’ cut from fruit leather.  Serve imme-diately or wrap individually in plastic wrap for storage.  Add a ribbon tie to plastic wrap as a decorative closure.


Clean-up tip: Soak saucepan before cleaning.


Recipes courtesy of www.popcorn.org