Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Homemade Jalapeno Poppers

My husband and I love jalapeno poppers. I tried a frozen version at the grocery store and they just didn't cut it. So I thought I would have to make them myself. These are great served with ranch dressing for dipping. I do HIGHLY RECOMMEND TO WEAR GLOVES WHILE PREPARING THE JALAPENOS. The heat from the peppers can burn your hands, and your face if you touch it, and the pain can last quite a while. I know, I have done it, more than once (you would have thought I have learned the first time). Now I always keep a box of vinyl gloves (powder free) on hand for preparing peppers. But also be sure not to touch yourself with your gloved hands either. Before filling the peppers I blanch them.

Definition of BlanchingTo plunge foods into boiling water for a few minutes, then remove and place in ice water. This process sets the color of vegetables, lets you easily peel fruits, and slip the skins off nuts. The food does not cook all the way through, so crisp texture is preserved.

So back to the peppers. I stuffed the peppers with half cream cheese, and half Mexican blend cheese, mixed with a bit of seasoning. I then dipped the peppers in milk, then flour, then back in the milk, in the panko, back in the milk again, and then in the panko for a second time. So it is once in the flour, and twice in the panko. You want to make sure to get a good breading on them so that the cheese doesn’t come out when you fry them.
The frying process is very quick. Make sure not to walk away after you put them in the oil, they will take just a couple of minutes.  Get ready to impress your game day guests!

1 8 oz. package cream cheese, softened
1 cup mexican cheese blend
1 teaspoon Smokey Mtn. spice, or your favorite southern spice blend
1 cup milk
all- purpose flour
oil for frying

Blanch peppers in bpoiling water and then place in ice water to cool . Once cool remove and drain on papertowels.
WEAR GLOVES. Prepare jalapenos while wearing gloves. Cut them in half lengthwise, and remove seeds and the white ribs inside the peppers. DO NOT AT ANY TIME TOUCH YOURSELF WITH YOUR GLOVED HANDS. The heat from the peppers will also clear your sinuses. Place prepared peppers on a cookie sheet.Mix softened cream cheese, shredded cheese, and seasoning blend.Don’t remove those gloves just yet. Place cheese in peppers and mound up a little.Prepare your bowls of milk, flour, and panko. . Dip each pepper in the milk, then flour, then milk, then panko, then milk, then panko. Repeat the milk and panko if needed to cover up the pepper and cheese.Place each breaded popper back on the baking sheet and preheat the oil to 350 degrees. Fry each pepper for 2-3 minutes, until. browned, but not so much that the cheese starts to escape. Serve with ranch or salsa.


Notice I do eventually learn. Gloves.


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