It’s Fall, which means it’s football season, and my favorite time of the year…
…and I realized that I haven’t really given you guys any good snacky football recipes, yet, and I don’t know what I’ve been thinking. We’re changing that right here, right now with these insanely delicious balls of fried goodness.
You’ve had jalapeño poppers, yes? Cream cheese-stuffed, deep-fried jalapeños? This is their slightly more sophisticated little sister—the Peppadew popper.
What’s a Peppadew? Well, first of all, they’re a trademarked pepper, which is…really freakin’ weird. Yes, “Peppadew” is a brand name, and no, they are not sponsoring this, and probably don’t even know I exist, haha! That being said, their peppers are super duper tasty (and I used them in this “grilled cheese”). They’re little, cherry-sized, pickled, red peppers that have a similar heat to pickled jalapeños (if you get the hot version of the Peppadews, though they also come in mild). The cool thing about them though is their sweetness. In this recipe, it cuts through the spice a bit, and balances out the overall richness.
I stuffed these with feta to add a little salty richness, and some homegrown chives to add a little oniony-garlicky flavor. Annnnd then I breaded them and threw them in a pot of super hot oil. And I actually mean threw. Because I am a huge baby, frying things still freaks me out, so I kinda toss things in to the burning hot oil as I jump back and recoil in fear. It’s great technique.
One thing I will say about frying, you really need to watch your oil temperature. I like using a point-and-shoot laser thermometer to give super quick readings. Plus, they’re just really fun to point at random things in the house and find out their temperature. Apparently, Rook’s ear is 74.2 degrees, while the trackpad on my laptop is 83.3 degrees. Veeeerrry interesting stuff, folks. In any event this is what my thermometer looks like:
In case you can’t tell from the photo with the popper skewered by a toothpick, these things are tiiiiny. So while the recipe makes 24ish, I can tell you from experience that they can be easily devoured by just two individuals. So, don’t be afraid to make more!
These are super simple to make, too. Because this is feta cheese and not cream cheese, you can pretty easily just use your fingers to pack the cheese-chive mixture into the little peppers. I found the hardest part to be the breading. But, that’s only because I am the messiest human on this planet, and managed to need to wash my hands after every couple of peppers. I don’t know how I manage.
Annnywayyys, I loved these, Mikey loved these, you’re going to love these. And we’re all going to love when I stop adding rough 13 extra letters to every other word of this post…
Yield: about 2 dozen poppers
- 2 and 1/2 ounces feta cheese (go for a creamier as opposed to a drier one)
- 1 tbsp chopped chives
- roughly 2 dozen hot Peppadew peppers
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 3/4 cup Italian seasoned Panko bread crumbs
- vegetable oil, to fry
- Heat 2-3 inches of vegetable oil in a heavy-botomed pot (I like using my enamel Dutch oven) to 350 degrees.
- In a small bowl, use a fork to mash together the feta and chives.
- Using your fingers, pack the center cavity of each pepper full of the cheese mixture.
- Roll each pepper in the flour, then dip it in the egg, then dip it in the panko. (I also liked to sometimes give them an extra light roll in the flour if they seemed like they needed it.)
- Carefully, drop the stuffed peppers in to the pot (do this in batches so you don't crowd the pot), and allow to cook for 2-3 minutes until golden brown. Remove from the oil and allow them to drain on a paper towel-lined plate prior to serving.
recipe adapted from here