No matter what you are serving for your main tailgating menu item, you always need some sort of a warm-up appetizer. Although I would love to claim this recipe has great tradition in my family I can not tell a lie. I actually discovered this recipe last October while serving as a tailgating spokesperson on behalf of Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Markets. Allison, the PR gal that was coordinating the media campaign, showed me this recipe. (Allison is a bit of a foodie and is, of course, on Twitter. You can follow her @AinLA. ) Since then, it has been a regular on my tailgating grill ever since because it is so simple and easy yet tastes so good. Also, because these are “finger foods”, your tailgate party guests can just pick up a popper using the toothpick and still walk around and socialize.
What you’ll need:
12-14 Fresh Jalapeño peppers
8 oz. Cream Cheese
2 Table Spoons minced garlic (garlic powder works as a substitution)
1 lb. Sliced bacon
What to do:
Slice each jalapeño in half length-wise. Remove all the seeds and inner membranes leaving just the outter portion of the pepper. Mix the cream cheese and garlic together in a bowl making sure all the garlic is thoroughly distributed in the cream cheese. Fill each pepper until the cream cheese fills the cavity where the seeds once were. Wrap the filled peppers with one slice of bacon and hold together with toothpick. (Tip: Soak toothpicks in water for 30 minutes to prevent the grill from igniting the wood.)
Place the peppers on a medium heat grill so as to not sear and burn the bacon. Turn frequently to ensure all sides are cooked. When the bacon is crispy remove and serve immediately.
Serves 4 – 6 tailgaters
Tailgating Tip: These can easily be put together the night prior to the tailgating party and frozen over night. Take them out of the freezer on your way out the door and let them defrost on your way to the parking lot.