Last month when I made a batch of roasted hatch chile & garlic cream cheese, I purposefully threw it in the freezer. I knew my family was coming into town in late September and we all love to grill cream cheese stuffed jalapenos as an appetizer, so I wanted to try it with this filling. It turned out wonderful! The chile and garlic flavor came through subtly and I even made a few with goat cheese for my little sister.
The only problem is they are so darn spicy I can only bear eating two of them at a time! Of course, my father doesn't have this problem. Somehow he's impervious to spiciness. Lucky guy.
Since I live in an apartment and can't use a charcoal grill, my only way to make these at home is in the oven. Normally I'd say this is a downgrade (charcoal grills make everything taste amazing), but it actually works in my favor.
Using the oven I can slice open the jalapenos and pre-cook them so they're WAY less spicy. Then I simply fill the jalapeno halves, heat until the cheese is warm and serve open face.
I can easily eat several of these without my tongue becoming so inflamed I have to chug milk! If you can't tell, I usually attempt eating 3 or 4 cooked on the grill and end up punishing myself. Even so, it's worth it.
But for all the rest of you folks who aren't immune to spicy foods, the oven method will work beautifully.
Roasted Hatch Chile & Garlic Cream Cheese Stuffed Jalapenos
Two methods for cooking roasted hatch chile and garlic cream cheese stuffed jalapenos. The charcoal grill gives them a wonderful flavor, but cooking stuffed jalapenos in the oven makes them less spicy.
Yield: 10 stuffed jalapenos
10 fresh jalapenos, tops removed and deseeded (use gloves!)
1 cup of roasted hatch chile & garlic cream cheese (click here for the recipe)
disposable gloves (for cutting the chiles--I strongly recommend these)
thin serrated knife or jalapeno corer
stainless steel jalapeno rack (grilling method)
large rimmed baking sheet (oven method)
Wash and dry the jalapenos, place next to a cutting board and put on your disposable gloves. This will protect your hands from the chile oils. If you don't do this, there is a good chance your hands (and whatever you touch them with) will burn for the rest of the day! Trust me, it's not fun.
Method #1: Charcoal Grill (tasty but pretty spicy):
Get your charcoal grill started at least 30 minutes prior to this so it's hot and ready for the jalapenos. Cut the tops off the jalapenos and using either a thin serrated knife or a jalapeno corer remove the seeds and ribs and rinse the insides with water. Make sure to be thorough. Any rogue seeds stuck to the inside will make a super spicy surprise for whoever eats it!
Discard all the seeds and ribs, rinse your cutting board and knife and then remove your gloves. Stuff each jalapeno 3/4 full with the cream cheese. You can use a small spoon to do this, but my preferred method is to place the cream cheese into a small plastic bag, cut off a corner tip and pipe it into the jalapeno. Place each pepper upright into the jalapeno rack. If you try to set them directly on the grill the cream cheese will run out, so I definitely recommend getting one of these.
Place the rack directly on the grill and cover with the lid. Cook for 15 minutes or until the peppers have softened and the cheese is melty and bubbly.
Method #2: Oven (less spicy):
Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Slice the jalapenos in half lengthwise, making sure to keep the top intact (if the stem comes off, that's okay). Using either your fingers or a spoon remove the seeds and ribs and rinse the halves with water. Make sure to be thorough. Any rogue seeds stuck to the jalapeno will make a super spicy surprise for whoever eats it!
Discard all the seeds and ribs, rinse your cutting board and knife and then remove your gloves. Place the jalapeno halves with the insides facing upward on a baking sheet and cook for 15 minutes. This extra cooking time helps to reduce the spiciness of the pepper. Remove from the oven and spoon cream cheese into each half then place back in the oven for another 10-15 minutes or until the cheese is melty and bubbly.
Notes & Tips
- You can use plain cream cheese or goat cheese if you don't have any the ingredients to make my chile and garlic cream cheese recipe and it'll still taste good. However, I'd recommend at least seasoning it with a few pinches of sea salt and granulated garlic for extra flavor.
- If you don't have access to Hatch green chiles, you can substitute jalapenos or poblanos when roasting chiles for the cream cheese dip.
- If you want the jalapenos even cheesier, mix in some of your favorite shredded cheeses.
I'd like to hear from you!
What's your favorite way to use fresh jalapenos in a recipe?
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