Everyone loves chilli poppers. Many South African restaurants feature chilli poppers as a starter on their menus. I always thought chilli poppers are a Mexican dish, but according to Wikipedia, chilli poppers are an Americanized version of the Mexican dish called “Chilli relleno”.
My family loves hot food, so I’ve been wanting to recreate this dish at home for quite a while. When I recently saw some jalapeno stuffing peppers at my local Woolworths, I decided that it was a sign and so I made these chilli poppers!
The chilli poppers at most restaurants are stuffed with mozzarella or cream cheese, and sometimes combined with feta. The bacon wrapped version seems to be very popular lately. I wanted to make a less rich chilli popper, so I decided to stuff these ones with only bacon and feta. Since I adore deep fried food, my version is battered and then deep fried.
Most recipes indicate that the chillies must be blanched first, but I prefer the chillies crunchy, so I omitted that step and the result was delicious. Chilli poppers are served with a dipping sauce. You can serve them with shop bought or homemade chilli sauce, sweet chilli sauce or any other sauce that you prefer. I served these with my delicious creamy dressing!
This is a very easy starter to make at home. Make some of these Mexican cocktails, invite friends over and have fun!
- 1 egg
- 125ml milk
- 60g (125ml) cake flour
- pinch of salt
- 125g streaky bacon, chopped
- 125g feta, crumbled
- salt and black pepper to taste
- 8 jalapeno chillies
- extra cake flour
- oil for deep frying
- Mix the egg and milk together. Sift the cake flour and salt into the egg mixture and mix until smooth. Leave the batter to stand for 30 minutes.
- Fry the chopped bacon until cooked to your liking. Mix the bacon and the crumbled feta and season with salt and black pepper.
- Make a slit on the side of each chilli, being careful not to cut through the chilli. Remove the seeds and membrane, if you want to. (Leave the seeds and membrane if you prefer hot food). Stuff the chillies with the bacon-feta mixture.
- Heat the oil in a pot or deep fryer until medium heat.
- Dip the stuffed chillies in the batter to coat and then into the extra flour. Dip again into the batter and ensure that the chillies are completely covered with the batter.
- Deep fry the chillies two to three at a time in the oil, until golden.
- Serve with a dipping sauce of your choice.