HAPPY CINCO DE MAYO!
Being that I’m a lover of Mexican food, how could I possibly not celebrate Cinco de Mayo?
This Cinco de Mayo I wanted to make something Mexican, but the only ingredients I had on hand were half Mexican.
Cheddar Cheese ~ yes, Mexican
Jalapeno ~ yes, Mexican
Cream Cheese ~ not so Mexican
Bread ~ so NOT Mexican!
Y'all know Jalapeno Poppers are my biggest weakness when it comes to junk food, and I shamelessly admit that I usually have a box of the cream cheese kind in my freezer, but I only eat them like once a month. I know, I’m so BAD!
After making my own Baked Jalapeno Poppers stuffed with Cream Cheese, I wanted to make something similar in the form of a sandwich, if you will.
Unfortunately, the highly creative Kevin from Closet Cooking beat me to this recipe, our versions are very similar, however I made a cheddar/cream cheese mix for my version.
It's ooey, gooey, a little unhealthy, but oh so good! Now all I need is some tequila to wash it down.
Happy Cinco de Mayo everyone… eat, drink, & be merry!!!
NUTRITION: Jalapenos are a very good source Vitamin C and a good source of Fiber, Iron, and Vitamin A. Although high in fat, cheese is an excellent source of Protein and Calcium, but should be eaten in moderation. Just like cheese, cream cheese is a good source of Protein and Calcium, but should be eaten in moderation due to its fat content. Whole Wheat bread adds Protein and Fiber to this sandwich.
INGREDIENTS (makes 4 sandwiches, maybe 5):
- Jalapeno – 12 (sliced in half & deseeded & broiled)
- Neufchatel Cream Cheese – 3 ounces (or use 1/3 less fat)
- Milk 2% Reduced Fat – 2 to 3 tbsp (depends on how diluted you want the cream cheese spread, start with 2 tbsp)
- Garlic Powder – 1/2 tsp
- Cayenne Pepper – 1/4 tsp (omit if you can’t handle heat)
- Black Pepper – 1/4 tsp
- Salt to taste – 1/3 tsp (use less or more)
- Medium Cheddar Cheese – 1/2 cup (grated for cream cheese mixture)
- Medium Cheddar Cheese – 1 cup (grated… use how much cheese you’d like for the sandwich)
- Unsalted Butter – just to glaze the skillet
- Whole Wheat Multigrain Bread – 2 slices per sandwich
1. Set the oven to BROIL HIGH!
2. Start by slicing and deseeding the jalapeno poppers. You really need 12 poppers at least, I ended up doing this in 2 batches since I wasn’t sure how many to use initially.
3. Into the oven for 15 to 20 minutes, keep checking after 10 minutes on broil.
CREAM CHEESE SPREAD
4. In the meantime, make the cream cheese spread. Add cream cheese and milk to a bowl.
5. Season with garlic powder, cayenne pepper, black pepper, and salt.
7. Grate enough cheddar cheese for the cream cheese spread and the sandwiches.
8. Add 1/2 cup of cheddar cheese to the cream cheese spread.
9. Mix well. Check for seasonings at this point.
10. Check on the jalapeno poppers, this is what they should look like. Love the taste of broiled jalapeno.
11. Spread the cream cheese spread on each slice of bread.
12. Top a slice of bread with cheese.
13. Then top with jalapeno.
14. Heat a cast-iron skillet on low to medium heat (dial 3). Once hot, glaze with very little butter. I highly recommend using a cast-iron skillet for that enhanced flavor.
15. Gently place both slices of bread on the skillet.
16. After about a minute or 2, top the jalapeno with cheddar cheese.
17. Place the other slice of bread over the cheese.
18. Cook on both sides until done. Split in half and serve immediately.
19. Repeat the assemble steps for the next sandwich. Enjoy!
TELL ME: Are you celebrating Cinco de Mayo? What are you eating, drinking, doing? Where you eating out? Share the love!