Did you know that raw jalapenos can give you a burn on your hands for up to 24 hours? Well, I didn't.
Did you also know that I spend hours at a time in the kitchen, just because I can, and because it's fun? Well, also because there was some sort of virtual slaughter happening in the living room.
Most people like to listen to soothing music or watch tv while they work on their recipes, but not me. As I scraped off those seeds and mushy insides of jalapenos one by one, all I could hear was shooting/ bombing/ yelling/ helicopters/ spaceships from some Xbox games. That was very unnerving. So unnerving that I wanted basketball and football season to start NOW.
Anyway, I made the stuffing, filled them into the pepper halves, drenched the stuffed peppers into flour and eggs and coated them with panko bread crumbs. After what seemed like forever of shootings and countless aliens exploding into nothingness, my jalapeno poppers were ready for the oven but the aliens just kept showing up. I swear, those games never seem to end.
And of course, once the poppers were out of the oven, everything disappeared in less than 5 minutes... so fast that I couldn't take a picture in time.
The burn on my hand from seeding the jalapenos lasted well into the night, and all I could do was sit there and watch more alien shootings. Now that, my friends, made a pretty interesting but satisfying Saturday night. Even though it was time consuming to coat the peppers, it was definitely worth it. Enjoy!
Makes about 30 poppers
15 jalapeno peppers, halved and seeded
1 package (8 oz) of cream cheese, preferably room temperature
1/2 package (4 oz) of cheddar cheese, or a mix of any other cheese you have on hand
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 cup of cilantro, finely chopped
1/2 cup flour
2 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cups panko breadcrumbs
Dashes of paprika, cayenne pepper, and chili powder to taste
Salt and pepper
1. Wash jalapeno peppers, cut them in half and seed the inside. Remember to wear gloves when seeding them!
2 Bring a bowl of salted water to boil. Blanch jalapenos for 2 minutes, then transfer to an ice bath to cool down and stop the cooking process.
3. In a bowl, mix cream cheese, cheddar cheese, paprika, cayenne pepper and chopped cilantro.
4. Stuff jalapenos with the mixture.
5. Preheat oven to 375.
6. Prepare an assembly line in the following order: flour, egg, panko crumbs.
7. Drench jalapeno in flour, dip into egg, and then coat with panko crumbs.
8. If there's not enough crumbs on the skin, repeat dipping into egg and crumbs to achieve the desired coating.
(If preparing ahead of time, now would be a good time to put the jalapenos into the fridge, covered with plastic wrap, until it's time to bake)
9. Bake in oven for 30 mins and serve immediately.