Happy National Popcorn Day!

Chef Cecil Rodriguez (aka @PraiseTheLard86) from Beef & Barley has the perfect way to celebrate this poppin holiday. His Hopcorn Soup has a hearty mix cheese (Merkts Cheese!), beer and hop-infused popcorn. Check out his easy-peasy recipe below, along with his WCIU-TV debut.  #AlmostFamous. 

Hopcorn Soup
Soup ingredients:
2 qt vegetable stock
1 qt cream
1 qt whole milk
3 12 oz bottles of beer
1/4 lb butter
1/4 lb flour
1/2 lb sharp cheddar
1/4 lb Merkts cheddar
Salt  to taste

Hopcorn ingredients:
Popped popcorn
Salt to taste 

Smoked paprika oil ingredients:
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tbs smoked paprika

-Melt butter and add flour to a medium saucepan
-Cook for 1 minute while stirring
-Add beer and stock and reduce by 1/3
-Add milk and cream; bring to simmer
-Add cheeses;stir until smooth
-Strain to get out any cheese lumps or lumps from the roux
-Garnish with hopcorn and a drizzle of paprika oil

-Add a few tablespoons of salt to coffee grinder with 1 or 2 hop pellets and pulse it a few times until the salt is a bit finer and has a green tinge from the hops.
-Toss popcorn in a little veg oil and season with hop salt.

Paprika oil:
-Heat oil to about 120° and add smoked paprika
-Let sit until cool
-Strain through a fine mesh strainer lined with a coffee filter.