Snap, Crackle, Jalepeno Popper
All I ever want to do on summer weekends is crash BBQs. And, yes, I’m using the term BBQ in the outdoor, light up the grill, party kinda way. I was able to crash one on the Saturday of Memorial Day. Our lovely vegetarian/lactard friend Maidelitala invited me, and as my guide, I decided I would make something that she could actually eat. That dish will be for another post, as will the dish I made for the other Saturday party that I got to too late to bring my food.
This post will star my Monday BBQ contribution. For Vi and Jerry Sizzle’s party, 80P made his signature chipotle dip and I also brought a whole pineapple to grill for dessert.
The main attraction was my above treat, grilled jalepeno poppers. Now, I don’t know what necessarily constitutes a “popper.” Does it have to be breaded? Does it have to be deep fried? Does it have to be rolling underneath a heat lamp at 711?
I just don’t know. What I do know is that these suckers are hott!
Our friends Anna and Jeb were up in DC for the weekend for a wedding, but were able to spend some time with us in between the festivities. Anna is the one who came up with the poppers. I mentioned to her that at my local grocery store I can only buy jalepenos in packages of 15-20 and wasn’t exactly sure how to use them all up. And this was the perfect plan.
Anyway, the recipe.
I finely diced about half of a white onion and sauteed that over very low heat, in extra virgin, for a fairly long time, and then added in about 4 cloves of garlic.
Anna and I then got to work on the jalepenos. We slit them open, leaving them slightly connected near the stem, took a grapefruit (serrated) spoon and scraped out the ribbing and most of the seeds.
In a separate bowl, I mixed together queso fresco, shredded montery jack, cumin, lime juice, fresh garlic, salt and pepper. I let the cooked onions and garlic cool a bit and then added that to the cheese concoction.
When I got to Vi’s, I stuffed the mixture in the jalepenos and secured them with water-soaked toothpicks.
I placed them on the top part of the grill – the rack that doesn’t touch the fire. When the cheese started to ooze, I laid down a sheet of aluminum foil (which is some magical shit if you ask me, I mean, how does it not burn? Its heating properties are amazing) and lined up the jalepenos on there.
After the skin started to blister, I took the jalepenos off and let them cool for a minute or two.
I chopped off the stem end and split them open and arranged them in a circle. See above.
**We Blog, You Decide**
I think next time I will add cream cheese to the mixture. I think the cream cheese will help deflect the intense heat of the jalepeno. Some people at the party were downing those suckers, but I had trouble eating just one. I needed to take a break (with other food) between each bite.