Mexican Jalapeño-Mariachi Poppers


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For a while now, I had been thinking of a way to incorporate a jalapeño popper into my brunch menu. I mean who doesn’t enjoy bacon, cheese and chile peppers in some form for brunch? Besides a breakfast taco or baked casserole, another popular dish you see at brunch is quiche. Essentially, quiche is a baked egg dish usually baked with a crust with a variety of ingredients added to the mix. For today’s recipe I came up with a mix using the similar ingredients found in a quiche and baked them in some fresh jalapeños and colorful mariachi peppers that were shared with me from a friend’s garden. Incorporating the egg results in an extra fluffy and creamy filling for this popper recipe.

Ingredients

  • 6 strips, thick-cut maple/brown sugar-flavored bacon
  • Olive oil
  • 1/4 cup white onion, minced
  • 1/4 cup minced and seeded jalapeño (works out to about 1 pepper)
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 4 ounces pepperjack cheese, grated
  • 1 tablespoon cilantro, chopped, plus more for garnish
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • Dash of hot sauce
  • 9-10 large chile peppers such as jalapeño or a milder sweet pepper, such as mariachi chiles

Preparation

  1. In a large skillet, cook the bacon at medium heat until crispy.
  2. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels and blot off excess grease.
  3. Chop small and set aside.
  4. While bacon is cooking, add 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil to a small skillet and saute the onions and minced jalapeño for 5 to 6 minutes, let cool.
  5. In a bowl combine the cream cheese, pepperjack, cilantro, milk, egg, hot sauce, 1/3 of bacon and onion mix. Add a pinch of salt and pepper and stir until well combined, set aside.
  6. Preheat oven to 400ºF.
  7. Slice the peppers in half, lengthwise and remove all of the seeds and membranes, With a small spoon, fill the peppers with cheese mixture and place on baking sheet or in a baking dish. Divide the remaining bacon and garnish the poppers with it. If the poppers don’t sit upright, you could push them together so they are touching and stay upright.
  8. Cover the poppers loosely with foil and bake for 15 minutes.
  9. Uncover and bake for another 15 minutes.
  10. Finish under the broiler for a minute just to brown the cheese a little.
  11. Remove from oven and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.
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