Position an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees. Put the pecans on a rimmed baking sheet and toast, stirring occasionally, until lightly fragrant and a smidge darker, 8 to 10 minutes. Let cool completely.
Meanwhile, add the apples
to a spice grinder and grind to a fine powder. Transfer to a small bowl.
Add the cooled pecans to the spice grinder
just until they are the texture of very coarse cornmeal
. Be careful not to grind them into a paste.
Transfer the pecans
to the bowl with the ground apples. Add the sugar, cinnamon
and a small pinch of salt. Stir to combine. Reserve.
the butter in a medium saucepan
over low to medium-low heat until light brown specks start to form and the butter starts to smell nutty, 10 to 12 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the oil and 3 popcorn
kernels in a large pot over medium heat until at least 1 of the kernels pops. Add the remaining kernels and cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid. Cook, shaking the pot occasionally, until the popping slows to a pop every 20 seconds.
Transfer the popcorn to a large bowl and toss with the melted butter and reserved spice blend. Serve immediately.
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