Sunday, September 16, 2007

Armadillo eggs (jalapeños stuffed with cream cheese and wrapped in bacon)

Growing jalapeños at home is fun, but we often find that we run out of uses for them. A local friend, however, has kindly solved that problem by introducing us to armadillo eggs. Armadillo eggs are halved jalapeño peppers filled with cream cheese and wrapped in bacon; they can be cooked on the grill or baked, and in either case are absolutely delicious. The fire of the jalapeños is cooled by the cream cheese, and the bacon wrapper is just a dazzling treat. Since we've made a few batches of these in the past few weeks, they're this week's second end-of-the-week recipe blogging post.

Jalapeño peppers (we use red jalapeños, but green are fine as well)
Cream cheese (~1 tablespoon per whole pepper)
Bacon (1 strip per whole pepper)

0. Preheat your oven to 425F.
1. Remove the stem from the jalapeños and cut in half. Scrape or cut out the seeds and ribs.
2. Fill the cavities of the halved jalapeños with strips of cream cheese.
3. Wrap each halved jalapeño in a half strip of bacon, and arrange on a foil-lined baking sheet.
4. Bake in a 425F oven until the bacon is crispy, approximately 25-30 minutes. The exposed parts of the cream cheese and jalapeños will likely be starting to brown; the bottoms of our jalapeños often are blackened, but taste fine.
5. Let cool for a few minutes, and then serve immediately.


Jalapeños contain capsaicin (the chemical that makes peppers hot), a lipophilic compound that easily diffuses through skin and can cause extreme pain, so handle with care. Do not touch your eyes (or other sensitive body parts) while handling peppers. Once you're done handling the peppers, wash your hands with vegetable oil prior to washing thoroughly with soap and water.

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