David went out today and picked every last habanero, red chili pepper, and jalapeño left in the garden. A co-worker who hails from New Orleans had told me that you could cut them up and freeze them beautifully. I think that NOLA folks drink in this knowledge with their mother’s milk. I wonder what those of us who were bottle-fed drink in?
Here’s the haul:
My sister, Karen, came up with a recipe for stuffed jalapeños a few months ago that has been used many, many times by my extended family since then. I’m pretty sure that she found it online somewhere, so with apologies to whoever originally created the recipe, here are Karen’s Jalapeños:
20-24 fresh jalapeños, depending on size
1 lb. Jimmy Dean regular sausage (or similar)
1 8-oz. package of cream cheese, softened
½ cup shredded parmesan cheese
½ cup shredded Monterey Jack, cheddar, or 4-cheese mix
Cut the ends off the peppers, slice in half lengthwise, and clean out the seeds. Gloves are essential here! Cook the sausage in a skillet, crumbling as it cooks, until all pink is gone. Mix the sausage and the cream cheese together in a bowl. Add remaining cheeses and mix thoroughly. Place a spoonful of the mixture into each pepper half and arrange the peppers in a large baking dish. Bake at 425 degrees for 18-20 minutes. Cool slightly before serving.
These are great dipped in ranch dressing, and I like to make up the dressing from the packet for a nice, fresh taste. If you’re worried about the nutritional value, each pepper has about a thousand calories and a billion grams of fat. Double that if you use the dressing.
Enjoy these end-of-summer treats!