"Baked" Jalapeño Poppers

"Baked" Jalapeño Poppers

August 14, 2020

Nothing makes jalepeños more popular than poppers. But nothing makes poppers better than a tropical summer theme -- coconut! This delectable party favorite calls for loads of infused vegan cheese -- we'll make more than we need, which means extra left over for infused mac n' cheese, philly cheesesteak -- you get the idea, freakin' awesome leftovers.  

Ingredients
20-30 jalepeños

The vegan cheese:
16 oz coconut milk
1 1/2 tsp onion powder 
1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp paprika 
3 tsp turmeric powder
2 tsp salt 
4 tablespoons agar agar
1/4 cup infused coconut oil (choose dosage)
3 tsp tapioca starch
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar.
1/4 cup nutritional yeast 
2 tbsp miso
1 cup warm water

Coconut Breading:
3 cups toasted coconut
1 cup coconut flour
16 oz coconut milk

Directions
To begin, combine all cheese ingredients except miso and water, and warm slowly by stove-top, low to medium until the mixture bubbles softly, for about 5 more minutes. Remove from heat. Mix in the miso and cup of warm water, incorporating well. Pour the mixture into greased pans to set (it takes about three hours in fridge). 

Halve and deseed a bunch of jalapeños. With the cheese set, the goal is then to smash chunks of the cheese into the halves. Next, prepare the breading. Pulse the toasted coconut in food processor. Put it in a tray or bowl. Do the same with both flour and milk, separately in their own containers. With each jalapeño, dip first in milk, then in flour and let dry. Then redip in milk, and dip each in the coconut blend.

Frying isn't the best option without egg in the dipping, as the coating will slide off. I baked each tray for about an hour at 375° to brown to perfection. The result? Not as firm as if fried, but they retained the delicate sweetness with the spice and heat. I leave the cooking method up to the chef; just serve immediately for best taste. Enjoy!