Saturday, June 29, 2013

jalapeno popper chicken

This tasted JUST like a jalapeno popper, stuffed inside of chicken and it was AWESOME! Even Ed went on and on about how much he liked it. Not too spicy and the right mix of cheddar and cream cheese... ah! We're ready to eat this again.
I made my own taco seasoning for this, and it was surprisingly easy. I'm not sure why I didn't try it before. It's definitely cheaper than dishing out the $1.50 every time I need the taco mix.
Panko! Use panko breadcrumbs, they really do add a bit more crunch and extra toothiness to the dish, something you wouldn't get with regular breadcrumbs. It makes it feel a little more like a "fried" jalapeno popper.
Confession! I didn't use jalapenos. I have wax peppers and poblano peppers in my garden right now and I wanted to use the first ones that have become ready for harvest! I'll tell yah, it didn't affect the flavor whatsover... still tasted like a popper.
This combines both kinds of poppers with the cheese- both cream cheese and cheddar cheese. It makes it creamy and delicious and sharp at the same time. I also used a food chopper to get my peppers nice and minced finely. Mostly because I'm lazy.
Mush, mush, mush and mush and this is what you'll come up with. You'll definitely do yourself a favor if you have your cream cheese at room temperature.
Normally, I like to use the thin sliced chicken breast. In this case, you'll want the big, thick, boneless skinless chicken breast because you'll be stuffing them. It makes for a big meal. I only ate about 1/3 of mine and then Ed had it for lunch the next day. Ed of course was able to eat his entire portion. Men.
Using a small, very sharp knife, make an incision about 1/2 inch from the top of the chicken breast and slice all the way down. You're making a pocket in the chicken, so you won't want to cut all the way through, and you'll want to leave a little edge on either side of the incision. A little chicken barrier, if you will. Season with salt and pepper on the inside.
Then stuff it! Portion 1/2 of the mixture to go inside of each chicken breast. You can fasten them with a toothpick, but I found that unnecessary.
Egg wash on both sides to help the panko stick.
Panko these bad boys on both sides and pop into the oven.
25-30 minutes later, this is what pops out! Don't worry about any cheese that may have oozed out the sides- those parts of the cheese are just a little crispy and more delicious!
Jalapeno Popper Chicken
Shoutout to Elly Says Sopa for this one!
2 chicken breast
1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
2 jalapeno peppers, seeds and ribs removed and minced
1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
1/8 teaspoon onion powder
1/8 teaspoon parsley
1/8 teaspoon paprika
Salt and Pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a shallow bowl, whisk egg for wash. In a separate shallow bowl, combine all seasonings and panko breadcrumbs. In a small bowl, cream together minced jalapeno peppers, cheddar and cream cheeses until combined. Prepare chicken for stuffing by slicing a small incision in lengthwise along the breast, almost butterflying to create a pocket. Stuff each breast with 1/2 the cheese mixtures. Dredge each breast through egg wash and then coat thoroughly with seasoned panko breadcrumbs. Place onto a greased baking pan. Cook in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until internal temperature is 165 degrees and flesh is no longer pink. Enjoy!