Poppers & Planning
August 1, 2012 § Leave a comment
Thanks to Annie’s persistence we met the other night for dinner. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to see her. I did. I enjoy her company.
I had a few bad weeks since we last met, back when I was likely still in shock. I’ve been unable to really do much of anything in public with people since that dinner. I couldn’t respond by email or text or phone to friends or family. I just didn’t want to. The energy it took to think about responding to people was draining. I had nothing to say except the things I already said, knowing I’d hear the same things I’ve already heard. It’ll get better and so on. I know it will get better, but I don’t want to hear it. I’m not sure why.
This is the first week in many that I feel most like myself or the new version of myself missing a piece. I’m grateful for this. Last week I was worried I was never coming back. Afraid the new me was angry, depressed and uninterested in anything going on in the world or in my own life. The new me barely had enough mental energy to go to the grocery store, run errands, cook dinner, or even shower and get dressed in real people clothes. All I’ve managed to do in this state are keep my flowers alive and eat a lot of jalapeño poppers. Too many poppers.
Jer and I split the poppers duties. Often he runs to the store to pick up ingredients we don’t have readily available. The prep and cooking time is long, but it involves us. I handle soaking the skewers and cleaning out the peppers while drinking a glass of very chilled pinot grigio. Jer mixes the cheese and spices, stuffs the peppers and wraps them with bacon. He then slides the skewers through, 4 poppers at a time. He also soaks the wood chips and prepares the grill. Because his job is messy, he misses out on drinking while prepping while I usually end up quite buzzed during the process.
He tends to catch up to my level of intoxication while the poppers smoke. We sit on the patio and admire the beautiful flowers I’ve managed to keep alive during the hottest summer ever. We talk. Sometimes we cry a little. Now we’re beginning to plan. Or I’m beginning to plan and he’s nodding along, unsure of whether to plan. But, we’re planning all the same.
Do any of you have great smoker recipes? We’ve only ventured into poppers and ribs so far. I’d love some feedback. Any healthier smoker recipe ideas would be welcome since I’d like to lose a little baby weight before, if we’re lucky, I put on new baby weight.
Smoked Jalapeño Poppers (by Jer)
12 Jalapeño peppers (the bigger, the better for stuffing), cleaned, leave seeds and membrane for heat
4 oz. Monterrey or Colby Jack cheese, shredded
1 package Cream Cheese
1- 2 lbs. Bacon (depends on if you used two strips to wrap poppers, we use 2 strips)
Wood or metal skewers
Mix shredded cheese and cream cheese. Spice to taste with cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper and paprika. Stuff gutted jalapeños, wrap tightly with bacon and slide onto soaked wood or metal skewers. We smoke them with a blend of hickory and apple wood for about 2 hours. DELICIOUS!