Hannibal business cooks up perfect day-long snack

Every day specialty popcorn is made fresh in America's Hometown.

Just ask Greg Addison, the owner and Popcorn chef at Paddlewheel Popcorn and Candy Company in downtown Hannibal.

What's the secret to making the perfect caramel corn?

"You have to keep everything hot, the right amount of sugar and not too much or too little popcorn. Temperature is really important because you're trying to spread a real thin coat of caramel over all of this," Addison said.
But before you make a bag at home for a midday snack, no matter what the variety, there's one thing to stay away from to keep your corn fresh and tasty if you're not planning to eat it right away.

"Moisture, moisture is a big enemy of caramel corn. It makes the popcorn sticky, it will make the cheese corn stale," Addison said. "So we try to keep the moisture out of it."

Do that by sealing it from moisture and that includes humid air. Click here for ways to keep snacks fresh.

And don't be afraid to mix your batch up with different spices. That's the key to invention ... at least in Hannibal.

Seventeen different varieties of popcorn are made in downtown Hannibal, ranging from cinnamon popcorn to hot and spicy cheese corn playfully called 'Peppery Pirates.' Click here for a complete list of varieties.