Popcorn in a microwave oven!

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It may be pushing the envelope to blame the maker for a design fault that stops the device only after two years' use. If you think safety is an issue, and the oven has an Underwriters' Laboratory sticker (was tested there), you could inquire whether they still have an interest.
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Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs
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On 5/7/2011 12:15 PM, Art Todesco wrote:

Unless you always happen to enjoy that toxic chemical factory explosion smell from the fake butter an alternative is to just use one of these:
http://www.cookware.com/Nordicware-60120-NWR1271.html
Ours is probably 10 years old. It uses plain popcorn, doesn't heat up the glass and no oil is needed.
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wrote:

I've got you beat. Mine is 54 years old. I was iirc (I was only 10) a premium from a popcorn company, or at least a much reduced price with proofs of purchase. This was before Orville Redenbacher even sold popcorn, at least where we lived, but probalby everywhere. Either my mother or I have had my pot for 54 years now. It does need oil in the bottom. It's just a big pot with a lid that fits.
Yours is only 22 dollars, I'll admit, but I've thought about remaking my own if I ever ruin it. (I've dropped he lid and bent the edge, and when I bend it back, it's not quite as round as it was, but so far so good. The lid has a handle sort of like (| but sideways, where | is the top of the pot, with about a 4mm hole in the lid and the handle, and a metal rod going through both. Abvoe the lid, the rod turns sideways for 3 or 4 inches and then bends up to hold a loose fitting, rotating knob.
Inside the pot, it goes down the middle almost to the bottom, where it turns almost horizontal to go close to bottom of the pot and reach almost to the side of the pot, but an inch from the edge turns clockwise a little, I guess to scoop up unpopped corn from the outside and put it closer to the center.
I only go into this detail, because one could make one of these himself. Pots are easy to get (you need one with a handle so the wire rod won't flop around, but you could even rivet a handle on a regular lid. I do think my pot has vents on the side of the lid. I'll look if someone wants. The only slightly hard part would be getting rod the right diameter, but all it needs is to weak enough that you can bend it, and strong enough that it won't bend by itself. How hard is that. That the crank is on the top has never bothered me. A little steam probably comes out the hole around the rod, but I've never noticed. I do notice that after 54 years, and periods where I ate popcorn every day or two for months, the hole is a little bigger than it was. :)
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Paper plate. Won't get hot. Won't transfer heat to the carousel. Cheap.
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Yes, it will.

Yes, it will.

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snipped-for-privacy@example.com (Doug Miller) wrote:

I use a simple paper towel folded in half under the center section of pop corn bags to act as a thermal insulator... the carousel does still pick up little heat, but it's negligible. I do the same with frozen TV dinners, and other items that tend to transfer large heat loads to the carousel.
I think an inverted paper plate would work as well, or possibly a bit better. A foam or plastic plate would not be a good idea for pop corn use, and as always, carefully monitor all pop corn preparation in microwaves.
I use the pop corn 'sensor' setting on my microwave and have noticed that the paper towel insulator method very much decreases both the time for kernels to begin popping, and total popping time.
Erik
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<Major snippage to get to this point>

Reason: Once the kernels are nearly all popped, temperature rises fast.
Microwaving of popcorn is a major cause of fires in college student housing.
--
- Don Klipstein ( snipped-for-privacy@misty.com)

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On May 7, 2:58pm, snipped-for-privacy@example.com (Doug Miller) wrote:

I use a double paper towel sheet...works like a charm. ==
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wrote:

a rotating antennae instead. Old Quasar (about 25 years old) - the antennae disk had a problem (arc burn) within the first year under warranty, but the unit has been rock solid dependable ever since. oes an excellent job on popcorn when I do it - but my wife often manages to burn the popcorn.
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On May 7, 4:58pm, snipped-for-privacy@example.com (Doug Miller) wrote:

You are probably technically correct, but hot paper is of no real significance in this problem.

Not to any significant extent as long as it's dry. If your carousel gets hot under a paper plate it's mostly because of radiant heat from the popcorn passing through it, not the paper transmitting heat. Not that the difference between radiant heat and thermal conduction matters much to the carousel, but the point is that a simple paper plate will protect the carousel better than a glass one. As mentioned by others, a paper towel works well too, for the same reason.
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Get a hot air popper, use actual corn kernals, and add real butter and salt when it's finished. Much easier, faster, safer, lower in calories and MUCH higher in taste.
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On 5/7/2011 9:07 PM, tmclone wrote:

We used to have one of those and the plastic housing finally self destructed. Couldn't find a replacement so I bought the microwave popper I linked to earlier in this thread. One thing we immediately noticed is that the popped corn had more flavor than the air popper version. If you think about it the air popper fills the room with "popcorn smell" when you use it which means there is a lot less remaining in the corn.
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I used to do warranty work on microwaves. Rule 1 should be "Always place your popcorn on a trivet. Never place it directly on the glass tray". Popcorn causes an extremely localized heating of the glass tray that results in a local expansion of the tray causing it to crack, very common. In this case it transferred the heat to the motor shaft that is not so common. Yepper GE will not sell directly to the consumer, only qualified techs.That is the same for the rest of the companies who make microwaves too. One less liability issue to worry about.
Jimmie
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