Maybe I should blame it on Olivia Pope or maybe it’s because individually they are delectable and combined they are divine, but there isn’t enough I can say about popcorn & wine (no rhyme intended).
Picture this. The day is winding down, the stresses of my 9:00-5:00 are gradually exiting my mind, the kids are asleep (or at least staying in their beds), and it’s time to finally put my feet up.
I pour a generous glass of a red cab sauvignon, pop some kernels in the microwave, put on a chick show and, voila! This mom is in heaven.
But what is it about popcorn and wine that makes my mouth water? Is it the combination of butter, salt and sweet grapes? Or perhaps it’s the fusion of a snack and an alcoholic beverage, a la peanuts and beer? Whatever it is, this mom is hooked.
The key question is whether I, and all you popcorn and wine loving moms out there, should be feeling guilty about this fabulous combo? Let’s break it down and see:
- Heart disease & cancer prevention – Both red wine and popcorn contain polyphenols (antioxidants), which are linked to cancer and heart disease prevention. You therefore may be doing your body a favor by eating popcorn and drinking red wine.
- A fruit and a vegetable? – Both red wine and popcorn have ancestral roots in a fruit or a vegetable so clearly they must be good for you.
- Popcorn can be healthy – Popcorn can be seen as a “healthy” snack when air popped, not microwaved, and topped with minimal butter and salt. Yet, you can microwave it and add all the butter and salt you want and it’s still better than most potato chips.
- Wine makes a fantastic dessert – A 6-ounce glass of red wine has about 144 calories, which is way less than most desserts. Skip the piece of chocolate mousse cake or cup of frozen yogurt and go for the vino. Desserts may taste yummy, but unlike wine, they won’t make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
- They’ve been around forever – People have been sipping on wine since 4100 B.C. Think about it. That’s over 6000 years of wine! Popcorn, although not as ancient, is the world’s second oldest snack food (circa 1885). I think it’s a pretty good sign if wine and popcorn have survived being popular for this long.
- Everybody’s drinking wine – I would argue that wine is the most socially acceptable alcoholic drink. Not that it should benefit you in any way, but it may just make you feel a bit better than drinking straight up vodka.
While I wouldn’t recommend you dedicate yourself to a popcorn and wine diet, tempting as it may be, you need not feel so guilty the next time you pour a glass of red and nibble on some kernels.
Pop, cork and enjoy, Mama!