Bored Cook In The Kitchen

Tried and true recipes, new twists on old favorites, and new dishes to expand my family's palate.

Tag Archives: holiday baking

BBQ Jalapeno Poppers

As you can see, it’s been a long time since my last post.  Summer was a crazy whirlwind that just flew by for me and now we are almost at the end of September!  Life just got in the way of my postings here.  Thank you to all of you who emailed me to ask if everything was okay.  I’m back to share some delicious recipes with you.

I’ll start by sharing one I know many of you have tried.  If you haven’t tried them, you must!  I’ve seen a number of recipes for these online and I actually have a traditional version of these Jalapeno Poppers I normally make.  The ones that you deep fry.  They are to die for as well, but I’ll share those with you on another day. 

This version I used was from Ree Drummond’s book The Pioneer Woman Cooks.  I looked at them so many times and finally this summer I made them for the first time.  Ree is not lying when she tells you how addictive these things are.  I’ve made them several times since, and most recently to use up all the peppers I had overflowing my plants in the garden. 

BBQ JALAPENO POPPERS

Recipe from The Pioneer Woman Cooks by Ree Drummond

  • 18 Fresh Jalapenos
  • 1 – 8 oz. Package Cream Cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 Cup Grated Cheddar Cheese ( I grated mine finely and probably used about 3/4 cup)
  • Green Onion, sliced (I omitted this)
  • 18 Slices Thin Bacon, cut into halves
  • Bottled Barbecue Sauce
  • 36 Toothpicks
  • **Rubber Gloves for working with peppers

**The reason I put those two ** next to “wearing gloves while working with the peppers” is because I’ve seen many people suggest this when working with hot peppers.  I have never had a problem using bare hands when cutting up hot peppers.  However, I’m probably just not sensitive to them as some people are, so if you aren’t sure or if you know you are sensitive to them, take the advice and use the rubber gloves.

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.  (Ree’s recipe suggests 275 degrees, but I found that to not work for me.)

Wash and dry the peppers and cut into halves.  I cut off the stems as well, but you can leave them on.

With a spoon, scrape out the seeds and membrane from each pepper and throw away.

In a mixing bowl with an electric mixer, mix together the cream cheese, cheddar cheese and the green onions if you are using them.

Fill each pepper half with the cheese mixture and set to the side.

Take a piece of bacon and wrap it around each pepper.  Secure with a toothpick.

Brush each pepper with some barbecue sauce.

I place these on a baking rack and cover the sheet pan the baking rack sits in with aluminum foil.  This way when the bacon fat drips you won’t be scrubbing it off the bottom pan.  Just throw away the foil and your job is done.

Bake for about 35 to 45 minutes. 

Remove from oven, allow to cool slightly and serve. 

I promise you that Ree is right.  There is no way you can stop eating these things!

Enjoy!

 

Royal Icing for Sugar Cookies

 

I’ve not felt much of the Christmas spirit lately.  It’s been a long year, and honestly I feel like we were just celebrating July 4th, and here we are at Christmas.  How did we get here so fast? 

I figured the best thing to do to get into that Christmas spirit was to bake some sweet and whimsical cookies.  Considering I still have pretty much all of my Christmas shopping to do, my Halloween decorations are still up, and I haven’t gotten around to taking the kids picture for our Christmas cards yet, I needed something to get me into the mood.  And fast!

Yesterday I baked up several batches of Sugar Cookies.  I found a recipe awhile back on Allrecipes that I fell in love with, and those are the ones I use.  They mix up easily, bake up perfectly, and offer an excellent canvas for decorating.   You can find the recipe here if you don’t have your own you love.  The Best Rolled Sugar Cookies.
The royal icing recipe I use was a combination of a few different ones I found and I tweaked a little for easier results.  Most of the recipes I found were too thin or too thick.  It took a little time to get it just right, and a little bit of here and there from a few different recipes.  The one I use now is a perfect consistency for my decorating technique.  Which is nothing to jump up and down about. 

COOKIE ICING (ROYAL ICING):

  • 2 Cups Powdered Sugar
  • 3 – 4 Tbsp. Milk
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. Light Corn Syrup
  • 1/2 tsp. Almond OR Peppermint Extract

Sift the powdered sugar into a bowl.  Add 3 Tbsp. of milk and stir until well combined.  The mixture will be thick.  If you think you need the extra tablespoon of milk, add it in and stir well.  At this point, the mixture will be very thick but stirrable.   (Is that a word?  Who cares, I just made it one!)

Add in your corn syrup and flavoring and stir well.  The consistency you are looking for at this point is similar to the corn syrup you just poured in.  If it’s still too thick, add in more milk in 1/4 tsp. increments, stirring well between each addition to reach desired consistency.  For the cookies I made, I prefer it to be that corn-syrup-like thickness which I find easier to decorate with.  If you prefer a thinner icing, you can use milk to get it thinner.  Just do it in small increments.  If you mess up and thin it too much, add in some extra sifted powdered sugar until  you get it just right.  It’s not an exact science.  You have to tweak it and work it until you find it to be just right.

Separate the icing into smaller containers (I used disposable small plastic containers from Ziploc) add some food coloring and get ready to go!  I have used both the gel food colors and the paste, and have noticed no difference in the consistency of the icing as a result of one over the other, so use whatever you have!

Get your arsenal all set up; sprinkles, colored sugars, and assorted candies.  I usually lay the cookies out on some waxed paper.  It’s easier than anything else.

 

My technique for decorating is to use a small stiff paintbrush.  I spoon some icing into the middle of each cookie and then I use the paintbrush to smooth it out and “paint” it to the edges.  I find it’s easier to use this method than spreading it with something like a knife or spoon since you have better control.

If you are adding sprinkles or any type of embellishment, add it while the icing is still soft.  You may need to use a toothpick if they are very small, like these snowflakes I added to the tree, gingerbread man and stars.

If you plan on using layers of color, do the base color first and allow it to dry just until it gets a crust over the top.  Then come back and add your next layer of colors.  Like the snowman I did here. I painted the base of the cookie in white, allowed it to cool while I decorated a few other cookies.  Then I came back to it once it had that crust on the top of the icing and added in the scarf, hat and face, working gently to not break through the crust. 

For the candy canes, I used a different approach.  I painted on the red icing first, leaving spaces between where I would later fill in with the white icing.  After painting on the red I sprinkled them with some red sugar crystals.  I let it dry for a bit and then I painted in the empty spot with white frosting.  I didn’t have any white sugar, but if I did, I would have added that on to the white part.  Next time.

Leave the cookies on a flat service for an hour or so until they begin to harden.  Don’t move them around or shift them until they are dry or your icing will begin to run and pool.  Once they are completely dry, either 6 hours to overnight, you can then stack them and store them in an airtight container.  Wrap them up in some clear cellophane bags and tie a ribbon around them and use them as gifts. 

Now before you think I’m a terrible mother who had all this fun without allowing my children to get involved…think again. My daughter had a great time decorating and making a mess.

I think she enjoyed using all the sprinkles vs. painting on the icing.

Try these soon with your kids, or just do them yourself.   You don’t need to be talented to do these.  Trust me when I tell you I am the not even the list bit artistic, so if I could do these, so can you.  Have fun with them and don’t worry about perfection.  They are, afterall, cookies.  Before you know it you will be shoveling them into your mouth anyway, so perfection needs not be achieved!

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