SANDRA'S ADDICTING MUSHROOM and JALAPENO POPPERS with BACON

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A perfectly addicting 2-for-1 side dish/appetizer you're able to serve
 hot out of the oven or at room temperature.
Don't wait for game day to enjoy all such deliciousness...


Prep: 20 Mins.
Bake: 30 Mins.
Yields: (14 Mushrooms-7 Halved Jalapeno Poppers, with 1 jalapeno half being chopped to add to filling)

INGREDIENTS

14 medium fresh button mushrooms, stems removed; reserve stems
4 large (4" long) fresh jalapenos, stems removed, including half of the ribs and seeds after cutting in 1/2 lengthwise
--(Remove more or less ribs/seeds to your desired level of spiciness)
2 strips center-cut bacon, sliced into 1/2" pieces
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
1 (8 oz. tub) cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup medium shredded cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
2 green onions (both green and white parts), finely sliced
1 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon dry Italian seasoned bread crumbs

METHOD

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place a rack over a foil-lined baking sheet, spray rack, and set aside.

Clean mushrooms with a damp paper towel. Carefully remove stems from mushrooms; set caps aside. Finely chop stems.


Cut stems from jalapenos, and toss. Remove half of the ribs and stems, more or less; set aside 7 halves.

Finely chop 1 half of a jalapeno, and set aside. [Remember to wash hands using hot water and soap!]


Place medium skillet over medium heat and saute' bacon pieces until slightly crisp and brown.


Add chopped mushroom stems and granulated garlic to skillet with the bacon, and continue sauteing for 2 additional minutes. Remove skillet from heat and set aside for mixture to cool.


Meanwhile, in medium bowl add the finely-chopped reserved jalapeno, cream-cheddar-parmesan cheeses, green onions, sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Add the cooled mixture from skillet, including drippings; mix to incorporate.



Using a teaspoon, generously fill mushroom caps. Fill jalapeno halves so they are level with sides of peppers. (See photo below.) Lightly sprinkle filled mushroom caps and jalapeno pepper halves with Italian seasoned bread crumbs.


Place filled mushroom caps and jalapeno peppers (with 'cut' jalapeno ends flush against each other to ensure filling remains intact during baking) on sprayed rack of prepared baking sheet.


Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes, until tops are golden and mushrooms and jalapenos are hot but still crisp-tender (not mushy). ~ Enjoy!

Hot out of the oven...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Tips: The beauty of this side dish/appetizer is that you can prepare the poppers well ahead of time, simply place in refrigerator until ready to bake.

Feel free to alternatively grill these poppers, just place the same baking rack (shown above) on top of barbecue grilling rack over indirect heat (using charcoal), covered, for the same amount of cooking time.



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