Monday, August 29, 2011

Padron poppers

Like jalapeno poppers, but with largish, fairly spicy padron peppers. This is definitely the happiest I've been with a breaded fried thing I've made. I suppose that's not necessarily a skill I want to spend a lot of time perfecting, at least when it's only me and Lester at home this week (what with Laura at Burning Man and Candace in Ann Arbor). But if you're committing to both making and eating a fried thing then it may as well be good!

8 3" padron peppers
1/2 c homemade ricotta, salted to taste
2 egg whites + 1 yolk
1/4 c flour
2 T cornmeal

Roast the peppers in a hot, very lightly oiled cast-iron pan until blistered and slightly wilted. Chop off the tops and remove the seeds, then stuff with a spoonful or two ricotta.

Start heating enough oil to come half-way up the sides of the poppers. For breading step 1, whisk together the eggs for several minutes until very light and fluffy. (If you remembered to separate the first egg, then whisk the egg whites until stiff then fold in the egg yolk, but it worked just fine sans separation too.) For breading step 2, stir together the flour and cornmeal in a flat bowl. Dip each pepper in the egg to cover it with a good fluffy layer, then dredge it in the flour to cover all the egg surface. Fry in one or two batches until golden on each side, flipping once.

Eat in short order (with yogurt or another cooling sauce if the creaminess of the ricotta isn't quite a match for the hotness of the peppers) and with corn on the cob rubbed with a slice of lime (how Mom likes it).

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