Indeed, the cool, chilly, blustery rains of mid-August are apon us, and though summer grows weary of tormenting the inhabitants of any warm climate with blistering sun and severe dehydration, it is not too late to once again bust out the grill. There is a sort of unwritten rule regarding summer cuisine and what instruments are required to create it, and I firmly propose the grill is just the instrument necessary to comply with said rule.
However, whenever anyone mentions ‘summer grilling,’ I typically identify the charcoal- or wood-sourced flame device with beef: beef franks, hamburgers, or steak. I question, what has become of casual cuisine? Has the summer merrymaking crowd no originality, no culinary drive, no inventive spirit that calls out the fat little French chef in all of us? Okay, true, many entertainers on the Fourth of July, Memorial Day, Labor Day, or any other summer holidy (National Cheesecake Day, for example) prefer a simple, quick, cheap, easy, and delicious entree that guests can enjoy on paper plates and napkins that will most certainly meet a toasty end during the evening’s campfire, so I can hardly blame anyone for settling with beef on the grill.
However, I can do my best to coax that psychotic little fat French chef out of you. Indeed, the grill is a beautiful instrument that brings out the natural flavour of any given meat or vegetable whilst adding a rustic, bold, and earthy flavour to the ingredients. Basically, you can use it for anything. So, in honour of our unwritten law, inner chefs, easy and delicious summer treats, and our upcoming Labour Day grill-a-thons, I shall reluctantly loosen my grip on my absolute favourite summer grill recipe: the unforgettable, the transcendent, the utterly life changing, Bacon-Wrapped, Cheese-Stuffed, Grilled Jalapeno Pepper.
I could continue to spout eloquent and indulgent verbosity regarding this treat, but there’s no point in any further prevarication. Here’s how its done.
What you need:
Jalapeno Peppers (get extras; you, your family, and your guests will probably want to eat a few handfuls. You can also use other varieties of similarly sized peppers, but I ultimately enjoy Jalapenos)
Bacon (I once created this dish using very expensive, thick-cut bacon from Miesfield’s Market in Wisconsin. This is a decision I would not recommend as it makes even cooking difficult, though I do recommend thick bacon for solo consumption. The thin, cheap, Oscar Mayer stuff will suffice for this dish)
White Mexican cheese (Fresh Mexican cheeses will not melt all over you’re beautifully scrubbed grill. Instead, it softens wonderfully and maintains shape. Queso Blanco works very well and has a flavour similar to Monterey Jack or Mozzerella. I also made a batch using Pepper Jack. The outcome was fairly positive)
That’s it. Three ingredients.
Slice the jalapenos in half from stem to tip and remove the seeds. Slice off the stems as you wish.
Slice the queso blanco into rectangular prisms that will fit into the jalapeno halves.
Wrap in bacon and fasten with a toothpick. Remember to soak the toothpicks in water to prevent combustion (and coal in your teeth).
Grill until bacon is evenly and thoroughly cooked.
Eat twelve dozen, refusing to share with hungry friends and family.
So, next time you bust out the grill for summer festivities, I would advise you not to settle for a slab of beef, a patty of ground beef, or an intestine stuffed with pureed beef. Take the inspiration you found here. Start with the peppers, then branch out to cactus and peaches. Integrate ingredients prepared on the grill with other more complex dishes. There is literally no limit to what you can cook on the grill.