Two Men, Two Pits and a Blog

A Hint of Warm: Jalapeno Poppers

“The Sun, with all those planets revolving around it and dependent upon it, can still ripen a bunch of grapes as if it had nothing else in the Universe to do.” – Galileo Galilei

Late morning sunbeams sparkle over the pond, long since frozen in time, whilst a cool, February breeze mingles though the pit-side Spruce treessun and snow and over the wintry land so callused in ice and snow. The first wisps of igniting charcoal waft quietly from the Weber Smokey Mountain, as it slowly comes up to speed. Black capped Chickadees dart playfully about, from spruce to feeder, and from feeder back to spruce again, nary holding still for the benefit of photographers. I didn’t mind. I was inside anyways, standing at the kitchen counter stuffing peppers with cream cheese, and enjoying how the amber shafts of sunlight fell into the house and warmed me there. It’s been a while, a good while indeed, since I’ve felt the sun on my face. It is rather remarkable when you consider, like Galileo did, that the sun is some 93 million miles away, and we only receive a small sliver of its energy, yet, in the same breath, it can make a bloke’s day when its unassuming light greets his window pane and lands warm upon his face like it had nothing else in the universe to do. The simple pleasures indeed. But then, its been a very long and cold winter, and I do tend to dwell on these things. Anyways, I should probably get along with the business of telling you what’s going on the pit today, and how it went and came to be. I think you’re going to like it.

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Atomic Buffalo Turds. Yup, that’s a fact. That is what the under ground grilling community calls them anyways. Now I can’t quite figure out why they call it that, for I have on occasion made the acquaintanceship of a buffalo, and I can assure you that their back end tokens look nothing like what we’re about to cook! But who cares I guess. The name is catchy if not down right deplorable. And it is kind of fun to serve up a plate of declared buffalo turds and see how your guests thus roll their collective eyes. You might, I suppose, be better off calling them by their politically correct name, jalapeno poppers. In the end, it doesn’t matter I guess, because good is good, and these things are fabulous if you haven’t had the opportunity. Cream cheese stuffed jalapeno peppers wrapped in bacon and smoked on the pit. Glory! Lets get after it!

You will need the following:

  • 10 jalapeno peppers
  • 1 block of creme cheese
  • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • teaspoon garlic salt
  • teaspoon pepper
  • 1 package of bacon
  • 1 cup ground Italian sausage

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Stir together in your favorite bowl

First order, and whilst the pit is coming up to speed, is to brown up some ground Italian sausage. Some folk use the little cocktail weenies. And some blokes just skip this part altogether. At any rate, once the sausage is browned, mix it all together with the packet of cream cheese, shredded cheese, garlic salt and pepper. Thus your tasty filling is alas ready for deployment. After this, you’ll want to slice the peppers in half the long way, or down their length. Some people like to leave them them whole, but slicing them in half is a salute to the higher powers of mathematics you see, and essentially doubles the appetizer output for the same price. So why not. Once sliced in half, if you’re a sally-tongued Swedish pansy like myself, you’ll most certainly want to clean out all the seeds, less you regret your life a few hours hence. And believe me the burn can come back to get you, no buffaloes required, if you know what I mean. But if you like that sort of thing, well then by all means, live the dream! But it is well to scrap the seeds out, and hence cast aside any jalapeno fears you might harbor, for the longer the peppers cook, the milder they seem to get. In the end they are a fraction of their fiery selves. A beautiful descendant and a hint of warm. And I’m OK with that.

Next, and with an artist’s hand, stick a good creamy glob of the filling onto each pepper halve, and then cloak them in a beautiful strip of bacon. Tooth picks are the secret here to keeping the bacon corralled and in place. And a half strip of bacon is just enough to aptly swaddled the handsome jalapeno, provided you are rationing your pork candy. That’s it. Time to bring these delectables out to the pit!

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It only took about an hour on the smoker, running around 275 before the bacon had browned up and they were done. But an hour is just enough time, turns out, to procure a lovely beverage ice box and take up residence in one’s man chair, feet propped towards the fireplace. Just enough time to watch plenty of smoke curl out way of the patio door. And just long enough, off-hand and by-the-way, to pull up something interesting on the public television station, tug your hat to your nose, and promptly doze off there, that is iffin you have a mind to. And I might have. And whilst the hickory smoke gently curled from the pit with the aromas of bacon afloat in the air, and the tweety birds all resumed feasting again in my absence, the sun also swung into position as if on heavenly strings, it’s soft hint of warmth descending upon shafts of gold, kissing the window sill that which flanked my humble easy chair. A soothing, unmerited warmth oozed over me like soft peanut butter on a hot slice of toast. And I fairly reveled in it, like a lottery winner, my body like a sponge for the sun. Indeed, the old astronomer was right, there really was nothing better in the universe to do. Feet by the fire. Free solar heat massage. PBS induced nap. Man! This is the high rigors of BBQ people. You gotta work up to it! Amen.

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Hickory Smoked Jalapeno Poppers. AKA, the Atomic Buffalo Turd. Cheesy, bacon-swaddled awesomeness on a peppery transport sure to be the hit of your party or get-together. *No buffalo were offended during the making of this appetizer.

53 responses

  1. I would have never thought to smoke poppers. Thank you for thinking of it!!! They look so good :)

    February 13, 2014 at 9:28 am

    • Hi! Yes, they work excellent on the smoker, and adds a new flavor dimension with that smokey goodness. They were excellent.

      Thanks!

      February 13, 2014 at 9:31 am

  2. I never thought of smoking poppers, what a great idea. They look delicious!!

    February 13, 2014 at 9:43 am

  3. Looks amazing!

    February 13, 2014 at 9:50 am

  4. Will have a look afterwards. Thanks guys for sharing!

    February 13, 2014 at 10:31 am

  5. They look amazing. I wish my stomach would agree with me. Spicey and old no longer mix.

    February 13, 2014 at 11:59 am

    • I hear you! Tho these weren’t too spicy it seemed, after an hour on the pit. Unless you missed a seed or two when cleaning them out, then you’re screwed.

      Thanks Rick!

      February 13, 2014 at 1:35 pm

  6. LOL, we call them B!tch Slappers and you can guarantee at any gathering at least one of the grills have one or three batches of those going. So yummy!!

    February 13, 2014 at 12:07 pm

    • Haha, OK. You Southern folk got your own way about things! You’re right tho, they are quite the popular thing for parties. They never last!

      February 13, 2014 at 1:32 pm

  7. I want atomic buffalo turds. The things look “the shit”.

    February 13, 2014 at 1:11 pm

  8. I love the disclaimer at the end. They look awesome but I have to say that jalapenos and I have an agreement, if they stay away from me everybody will be happy. I visited San Antonio about 11 years ago and found myself invited to a real Texan BBQ. The bloke turned up with his smoker/barbecue on a huge trailer and proceeded to dish up some fine food. I missed removing a jalapeno. How did I know I was hungry the next day? My bum had stopped burning. :-(

    February 13, 2014 at 2:24 pm

    • Yes, one can aptly track the course of a jalapeno pepper by its distinctive burn, as it travels through your digestive tracks, and upon leaving, it burns even then. I made the same agreement with jalapenos, until I tried these poppers. I don’t know exactly how it works, but the longer you cook them, the less burn they engender. But eat them raw, with seeds not removed, and I’m in for all matter of misery.

      Thanks Laurie. Take care!

      February 13, 2014 at 2:36 pm

      • I guess that’s why pepper spray burns. :-) I agree that the cooking process must alleviate the heat somewhat. We’ll leave raw jalapeno eating to those dills who post videos of themselves eating it on youtube. I have too much respect for my alimentary canal.
        Cheers all.

        February 13, 2014 at 3:13 pm

    • We call that “baptism by fire”. Bet you never forget the experience, though.

      February 13, 2014 at 3:26 pm

      • Lol. I think I’d prefer the water at the other end. :-)

        February 13, 2014 at 3:39 pm

  9. Wow! They look so good! I love reading your blogs, you have such a unique and totally charming writing style. It could well be several months or so before we, here in England might be able to cook outside- we have had gales and high winds for many weeks now and there is so much flooding. People with land here in Devon are offering those whose fields are underwater, the chance to bring their animals down here. In some cases, horses are trapped in stables and no one can get to feed them. The jet stream is forcing gale after gale over England. Your blog helps me to dream of better times and trying your fabulous dishes. Thank you, Karen.

    February 13, 2014 at 2:54 pm

    • Wow. It sounds like its getting pretty sporty in England, there. I had no idea. Hoping your high and dry and happy enough to weather it all. Yes, brighter days are just ahead. I thank you also for the kind words. That kind of feedback is like gold to blogger. Or like a patch of sun on some dry grass to you, I suppose. Anyways, I really appreciate it. Thanks kindly! Stay dry!

      February 13, 2014 at 3:01 pm

  10. Your thoughts on maple bacon for this recipe? And thick-cut? You know that’s what I stock up on. Would regular bacon work better?

    February 13, 2014 at 3:29 pm

    • Well, MRs Deerslayer, I have heard more than one person say to steer clear of the thick cut bacon for these poppers, and I suspect I’m OK with that. Save the thick stuff for other things. We did use maple bacon for these tho, and it was fabulous. But yeah, most popper purists suggest regular bacon for these, in so much as they wrap around it better I guess. But I have never tried them with the thick cut, so I cant say for sure. You should do it, and report on the results!

      February 13, 2014 at 3:32 pm

  11. My husband is currently drooling over your photos! I think a smoker at the campsite has become top priority for him now!

    February 13, 2014 at 5:24 pm

    • That sounds like the way to go! Wipe up husband’s drool and go get one! Thanks for stopping by!

      February 13, 2014 at 5:49 pm

  12. Lookin’ good, and a worthy hour or so spent on these beauties.

    February 13, 2014 at 7:13 pm

    • Thank you kindly. Yes, any time we can spend at the pit is not deducted from our life spans.

      February 13, 2014 at 7:39 pm

  13. I was planning on doing some (place appropriate adjective here) pork ribs on my Awesome New Grill/Smoker for Valentine’s day and I am now thinking I must add a few of these to the mix.
    Oh, and just for the record–Capsaicin, the hot part of the peppers? It’s fat soluble so the more fat you have, the farther around it spreads so the less hot it seems, also it looses power with long cooking.

    February 13, 2014 at 10:07 pm

    • Ah very cool. Well that answers the question to the reduced burn of these peppery yum yum. Thanks for clearing up the mystery!

      Jalapeno Poppers would start a rib dinner off the right way for sure. I vote yes!

      February 14, 2014 at 9:49 am

      • The poppers were AMAZING, thank you so much for sharing the recipe. The ribs were pretty good, too. I used a homemade rub that was tremendous too.

        February 14, 2014 at 8:42 pm

      • Cool! Glad they worked out for you. How can they not tho, i guess, there is bacon involved. What was your rub made of?

        Anyways, congrats on what sounds like a meal well done.

        Potp

        February 14, 2014 at 9:45 pm

      • My hubby just had another suggestion, add some crabmeat to the mix instead of the sausage…

        February 14, 2014 at 8:57 pm

      • Mmmm, there ya go! Your husband has good instincts. Dang, that would be good. Tell him thanks!

        February 14, 2014 at 9:42 pm

  14. If it ever stops raining here in England this is one recipe it would be great to start the spring BBQ season with. They look and sound great and you again achieve that wonderfully poetic way of expressing yourself too. Superb!

    February 14, 2014 at 7:30 am

    • Thanks for that, Adam. Yes, these poppers are at once easy, as they are delicious. But then bacon is involved, so would you expect anything less!

      Keep dry over there Adam. Cheers!

      February 14, 2014 at 10:10 am

  15. One word: YUM!!

    February 14, 2014 at 9:01 am

  16. Liz

    Had no idea they had a second name. Huh, learned something new today,

    February 14, 2014 at 12:30 pm

    • Oh yes, an alias as it were. Not too flattering, but another one even so. Have a beautiful day Liz!

      February 14, 2014 at 12:42 pm

  17. Pingback: Grilling excellence | Dragonfly's Dance

  18. Ahhh yes … Amen indeed. I happen to live quite close to Buffalo, in the great State of NY and … (even though I am NOT a Bills or Sabres fan) I AM, however a HUGE fan of Buffalo Turds. We, here in the P.C. Frozen North, tend to refer to them as “Poppers” but … THAT’S only because we have a “proper” Canadian, ‘nice guy’ ‘image’ to uphold … *sigh*. Good job my Smokie Brutha … Stay hungry !! :)

    February 15, 2014 at 7:41 pm

    • Thanks Doug! Yes deep down and under it all, we all know that everybody really wants to call them buffalo turds, but can’t. I understand. Your secret is safe here.

      February 16, 2014 at 1:52 pm

  19. These look amazing!

    I’m putting a bacon on this weekend so it looks like the first thing I’ll be doing after is making these bad boys

    We don’t really get buffalo round these parts though so I might have to adapt to the Aussie vernacular… Atomic Kangaroo Turds?

    February 16, 2014 at 10:37 pm

    • Haha, brilliant! AKT’s will be an Australian hit!

      Yeah, these poppers are mighty tasty. Wonderful even. You will enjoy it!

      February 17, 2014 at 8:42 am

  20. Awesome guys, love poppers, yet to do these in my pit, but must be doin em soon. Thanks for the follow, going have a thorough read over the rest of your posts, heaps of ideas.

    Cheers

    February 18, 2014 at 3:37 am

  21. Pingback: Atomic Buffalo Turds | Things that Fizz & Stuff

  22. Haven’t tried them but they look so good.

    Reblogged on: http://thingsthatfizz.wordpress.com/2014/02/19/atomic-buffalo-turds/

    A terrific recipe.

    AV

    February 18, 2014 at 9:51 pm

    • Thank you kindly. Yeah these things are great if your looking for an appetizer idea. So good!

      February 18, 2014 at 10:00 pm

  23. The rich decadence of those poppers makes my mouth water. :P

    February 19, 2014 at 11:11 am

  24. daveldman

    That sounds awesome

    February 23, 2014 at 10:27 am

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