Well, this was a rather disappointing recipe for jalapeno poppers to be honest with you — and from Epicurious too! 

There were multiple problems but I have some ideas on how one might be able to fix this.   But first, the problems.  One issue that isn’t Epicurious’ fault is the jalapeno itself.  The exterior is slick and there’s nothing for the breading to hold on to.  The second is that the shredded cheese doesn’t work at all.  It’s too messy. 

The breading recipe itself is great and when it was able to stay on the jalapeno, it was awesome. 

Jalapeno Poppers  Jalapeno Poppers  Jalapeno Poppers  Fried Jalapeno Poppers

I thought the baked jalapeno poppers were really good and next time, I think I’d just stick to baking them.  I think it was at 375 for about 10-15 minutes or until the breading was brown and the cheese was melted.

Baked Jalapeno Poppers

UPDATE 11/1/2008— I made these again.  Here are the modifications I made:

  • I did use an apple core and carefully cut off the tops and de-seeded the jalapenos.  Then I cut a chunk of mozzarella and put inside the jalapeno. 

Homemade Jalapeno Poppers

  • I put the chunk of cream cheese in the freezer.  While I didn’t wait for it to actually freeze, I did spread the cream cheese on the mozzarella.  But if I would have waited for it to freeze, I would have cut a chunk and put it inside with the mozzarella.

Fried Jalapenos with Cream Cheese

  • Then I took the peeler and carefully peeled pieces of the jalapeno skin off.  If you look carefully to the photo, you’ll see some of the skin is removed.

Homemade Jalapeno Poppers

  • Next I dipped in the egg and bread crumb (though I used panko) mixture. 

Homemade Jalapeno Poppers

  • Then I fried in vegetable oil.  If you had a real fryer, you could definitely use the grill skewers and put on the top to fry.   You can also bake them as those taste great too!

Homemade Jalapeno Poppers

  • I fried normally, but it still worked (although it did goop out a little).

Homemade Jalapeno Poppers

  • It was still excellent and good modifications.  I now can recommend this recipe!

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So here are my ideas that might make this work better — I haven’t tried it yet though so don’t hold me to it!

  • Reverse the jalapeno so the outside is now the inside and the inside is now outside.  That gives it the texture  so the breading can hold on.  Don’t cut the bottom off, but cut the top off the same way you carve a pumpkin so the top can sit on top when frying — use an apple core to cut the top and de-seed the jalapeno. 
    • Or what about using wonton wrappers for the outside to seal it up and give the breading something to hold on to?  That might work too!
  • Use a chunk of cheese (e.g. provolone) to put on the inside, not shredded cheese — some recommended using cream cheese too and that sounds like that would be good.
  • Seal it up with toothpicks.
  • When it’s ready for frying, use grill skewers and put through the tops of the jalapenos so that you can dip the majority of the jalapeno into the hot oil. 
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