My grocery stores here in Dubai are hit or miss when it comes to some ingredients. All year-round we can find the little red chili peppers that are often used in Asian cooking but habaneros and jalapeños turn up less frequently. I’ve learned over the last almost four years of living here to take advantage, and quickly, when I see those two.
I make my own habanero sauce that we eat on just about everything so I buy the peppers, remove the stems and wash them immediately. Then I freeze them in a Ziploc bag until I am ready to make sauce. Making habanero sauce requires weather cool enough to open the windows and doors to let some fresh air in and that won’t happen here until a little later in the year.
When decent-sized jalapeños appear, I make poppers. Traditional jalapeño poppers are filled with cheese, breaded and deep-fried but for many years, I’ve been either breading and baking mine, or wrapping them in bacon and baking them. Either way makes a fabulous, delicious jalapeño popper.
I’ve been on kind of a shrimp kick lately, with last week’s bacon-wrapped spicy baked shrimp and spicy salmon shrimp burgers on this blog and, even today, make sure you check out my Cucumber Shrimp Cups on the Sunday Supper Movement website. They are pretty and tasty!
When there were jalapeños in my local grocery store and Sunday Supper announced a football food theme, I knew what I had to do! Add shrimp to my bacon-wrapped jalapeño poppers as well. Best decision ever! If you are gearing up for football season, you'll want to make these and possibly everything else on the list below. Let the games begin!
24 medium shrimp, peeled and cleaned
1 tablespoon olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
3 1/2 oz or 100g cream cheese, softened
3 1/2 oz or 100g extra sharp cheddar, grated
2 cloves garlic, garlic pressed or very finely minced
12 fresh jalapeños
12 slices streaky bacon
Preheat your oven to 425°F or 218°C.
Heat a skillet and drizzle in the olive oil. Quickly cook the shrimp for a few minutes, sprinkling them with a little salt and freshly ground black pepper. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
Cut jalapeños in half lengthwise. I like to cut carefully through the stem as well so each half still looks like it has a stem.
Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and membranes. If you don’t like things too spicy, you can discard these. I like to add them to the cheese filling.
Mix together the cream cheese, cheddar, garlic and salt. Chop the membranes of the jalapeños and add them in along with the seeds, if desired. Give the whole bowl a few good grinds of black pepper and mix again.
Fill the jalapeño halves with the cheese mixture. Top them with a shrimp each. Cut the bacon slices in two and wrap one around each shrimp topped jalapeño popper. Secure the bacon with a toothpick.
Set them in a baking pan.
Bake for 20 minutes in your preheated oven or until bacon is crispy and cheese is turning golden as well.
Many thanks to our host today, Coleen of The Redhead Baker and our event manager, Shelby of Grumpy's Honeybunch. How I wish I could get together with all my Sunday Supper friends to watch football. Who am I kidding? I really just want to eat all these fabulous dishes!
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