The Thanksgiving long weekend was a nice quiet one for us. We didn’t do the bird but we did eat a lot of appetizers as our feast. Most of them were from the freezer section of the supermarket, but we did make one from scratch. Fresh jalapenos filled with garden vegetable cream cheese, wrapped in bacon, and then baked. Most excellent! I’ll get to the recipe below. I just cobbled together what I read from the other thousand recipes for the same thing on the ‘net.
We have been trying some new wines, beers and spirits.
Franzia Dark Red Blend – the king of box wine, Franzia, has made a dark red blend for their premium line. It’s a very nice blend, not too tannic or too soft, and for around $20 for 5 liters, its worth a look. In addition to drinking it straight, we happened to mix it with Cran-Tangerine juice cocktail and it ended up tasting like a pretty darn good sangria (ages ago I went to Spain and had quite a bit there). I was afraid the cranberry would bring up the bitterness but it didn’t, standing in for other fruit flavors, and the wine enhanced the tangerine very well. I was surprised since the juice itself was fairly bland.
Genesee Salted Carmel Chocolate Porter – This is a premium beer from our favorite Genesee Brewing Company, home of the cream ale we drink. When we visited the brewery about a year ago, we toured their pilot batch brewery, and this is one that was run up there. It’s in bigger production but its still pretty small batch. It’s not a cheap beer, coming in just under $60 a case, but since we drink a lot of $14/a 30 pack Genny Cream Ale, we find it balances out 🙂 . It is a dark cola in color, with a fantastic caramel scent and chocolate caramel taste. Not too sweet at all, and I have no idea how they got that hint of salt in there so nicely.
Black Velvet Toasted Carmel whisky – This is a very smooth blended whisky with an excellent caramel flavoring. It’s very good neat. However, we poured it into eggnog. That was wonderful…and dangerous. It’s so smooth, you don’t get much of an alcohol burn even if you put in probably more than you should.
Here’s our recipe for the jalapenos.
Fresh jalapenos (we went for the 3” or so long ones)
Garden vegetable soft cream cheese
Thick cut hickory smoked bacon (we used Oscar Meyer)
Preheat oven to 385 degrees Fahrenheit. Cut peppers in half so you get to complete “boats”. Remove seeds and membranes (leave more or less if you like heat). A grapefruit spoon is perfect for doing this. Fill with cheese. Wrap with a third of a slice of bacon. You can use a toothpick to anchor or do like we did and just put the seam on the bottom on our broiler pan since it has those convenient divots.
Bake for 40 minutes (this got the bacon well cooked but not hard and the peppers soft). Let sit for about 5 minutes after removing from oven. Our peppers had a nice hit of spicy heat but weren’t so hot that I couldn’t snaffle down 5 of them in short order. They went very well with the Genny Cream Ale. 🙂
Eat and drink well!