A friend of mine requested a Jalapeño Popper recipe, so Christian, here you go!
While I didn’t want to do a typical Popper, I thought I would try something new and use wonton covers instead. My family and I would always go to Montana’s Cookhouse for their Oven Baked Antojitos appetizer. They were always SO delicious. I’m still upset that the Montana’s in our area closed- we now have to go to Ottawa for their closest location.
We tried to copy the recipe a few years ago, but it was never the same. This inspired me to do an “in between” recipe; a spin-off of poppers. Now that I have been cooking for a longer amount of time and know more, I will definitely make the offical Antojito recipe so keep following me to see how that turns out! I recently made these again for my family and they were a huge hit!
A box of Wonton Covers- thaw them in the fridge overnight or 40+ minutes on the counter
250 g Cream Cheese- room temperature
1/2 cup Shredded Cheese
2 Jalapeño Peppers
1/2 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
6 strips of Bacon, cooked and chopped
1 Green Onion, sliced thin
(I keep mine in water. Why? I’m growing them– so easy and you can save money!)
3 cloves garlic, diced
Depending on how many servings you need-
2 parts Honey,
1 part or less of Soy Sauce
Red Chili Flakes
While you shred the cheese, slice the green onion, dice the garlic and chop up the jalapeños, have your bacon slices frying in a pan. Once cooked, allow it to cool and then crumble it.
As you may or may not know, the heat from jalapeños comes from the seeds. Therefore, if you want the poppers to be spicy, leave the seeds in. If not, you can easily remove them. Since John loves spice and I do too (just not as much as he does) I left one pepper with the seeds intact and the other with them removed for a bit of balance.
Put the bacon, softened cream cheese, shredded cheese, sliced green onion, diced garlic and splash of Worcestershire sauce in a bowl and mix well.
At this point, start heating a skillet or a pot of oil for frying the wontons. I mixed in the grease from the bacon pan to add a bit of flavor. At the same time, place a cooling rack on top of a baking sheet lined with parchment paper for once the wontons are fried. It is a good way to allow them to cool, to remove some of the oil and it will be easy to clean up.
To prepare the wontons, have a small bowl of water near you so you can wet your fingers. This will make it easier to handle the covers. Take one cover at a time, wet the edges and put a small spoonful of the cheese mixture into the center. Pull one corner of the cover and bring it diagonally to the other corner. Squeeze the edges together and be sure there are no holes. This is important for when you put them in the oil. You want poppers, not exploding wontons.
I actually never deep fried anything before. The splatter from bacon cooking alone hurts me…. so, this was an adventure. You should have seen me. I was wearing a massive sweatshirt just so my arms would be safe from the oil. It was pretty ridiculous.
Once the oil is heated to about 350-375° F, place 4-6 wontons and allow them to brown. Turn them over once. Each side should be fried for about 2-3 minutes.
Remove from the oil and place on the cooling rack for about a minute.
While they cool, make the dipping sauce.
Simply combine all the ingredients listed above. Taste along the way and make it to your liking. Add more brown sugar or honey if you want it sweeter or red chili flakes if you want it a bit hotter etc. All I can say though, is to be careful of how much soy sauce you put in it, it can quickly become overpowering.
The sauce will become a great addition to the dish, I promise.
Garnish the poppers with sliced green onion and voila!
Also, if you have a lot of leftover mixture, here’s a really simple recipe for lunch or dinner the next day! You can also use it as a great topping for nachos! Delicious.
I had made the five shown above to test them before serving others and I ate them in two minutes… five is far from enough- so get ready to use the whole package of wonton covers!
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