If we could bring that great movie theater popcorn into our living rooms, there might not be any reason to ever leave the house again; well, except to go out and make the money to buy more popcorn, of course.


Imagine this. It's Saturday night and the movie listings have been scoured until everyone can agree on the show, time, and location. The anticipation is thick and hopes are high as the well-bundled troops parade out the front door and out into the night. Every breath makes little clouds. The evening autumn air smells like the holidays. Everyone piles into the car. Cheerful voices crack friendly jokes and remind each other about purses, locked doors, and seat belts.


Excitement builds as wet streets are navigated. Colored electric lights reflect off puddles and inexplicably add a sense of cheer and familiarity.


There's the theater, just up the street, bustling and shinning bright like a great beacon of promises fulfilled. Parking stinks, but who cares. It's worth it. This movie is going to be great. The line at the ticket counter isn't ideal, but who cares. This movie is going to be totally great. The prices are really steap, but who cares. This movie is going to be the greatest movie ever.


Once inside, that little printed ticket in hand is forgotten. There's the concession stand, and of course, another line, but who cares. There are sweet and salty treats at the end of this one.


Then, "Wow, did these prices go up?" --and-- "You want how much for a large pop and a pack of Red Vines?"


The shock subsides. The astonishment is shaken off, and a tub of warm, buttery popcorn is ordered. To heck with what it costs.


That's when it happens. That's when it all goes horribly wrong. That's when the high school sophomore behind the counter with the glazed look in her eyes drops the bomb. "Uh... sorry sir, the popcorn maker is on the fritz. Management sympathizes and would like to apologize for this inconvenience, but there will be no popcorn this evening."


The night is ruined, right? A good movie just isn't the same without the action of greasy fingers flinging that fluffy, salty snack into a happy mouth. And the stuff you get at the store and pop in the microwave or on the stove-top just doesn't cut it. That store bought stuff just never seems to be as good as the finger-licking, treasure of a treat that they peddle down at the theater. Well, believe it or not, those who know their way around a proper popper and a bag of kernels can have that theater popcorn experience anytime they desire.


Here's what you need to know.


First, the kernels need constant movement and proper ventilation to prevent sogginess. You want a popper that has a mechanism for stirring and sufficient ventilation.


Next, you need the right oil. Coconut oil works best, but you should experiment to find the one that works for you.


Then you need the right flavoring. What you want is the stuff they use down at the theater. It's called Flavacol, and it will make a world of difference.


All of these things can be purchased online.


Finally, you need a confident, steady, and practiced hand; and eventually, they'll be lining up at your door for movie night. You'll have to beat them off with a stick.