Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Jalapeño Popper Chicken

Sometimes you've gotta spice things up. Sometimes, despite the fact that you get sick after just a few minutes of reading in the car, you say what the heck, and book a 7-day cruise. Because yes, there's a chance you will spend that week as sick as a dog, but there's also a chance that you'll have the time of your life. Sometimes, you ditch the job prospect that makes you feel comfortable and chase after the one that scares you a little.

I'm not usually a risk taker. But sometimes you've gotta throw the rule book out of the window. See, I go around saying I don't like jalapenos. They're a wee bit too spicy. But the other day, I was looking for something fresh and healthy with a little kick. And quite frankly, I like the way  “Jalapeno Popper Chicken” rolls off the tongue. So the other day, I made it. And you know what? It was amazing! Yes, a bit spicy. I may have gone a little far with the peppers--next time I'll cut it down by maybe a half of a jalapeno. But look, I promise this isn't going to burn your tastebuds off, and it's super satisfying! It's a fabulous combination of spice, creaminess and freshness. So make it. Don't think about it too much. You're gonna love it.

This dish is also pretty light. Check out the nutrition info below if you're interested. Buy the thinly sliced chicken breasts if they're available. If not, just slice a regular chicken breast in half or pound it thin. These are decently sized, although not huge, so if you're not making several sides (we enjoyed mexican rice, a green salad and biscuits) you may want to serve two to each guest.

Jalapeño Popper Chicken 
Adapted from Skinnytaste

Serving Size: 2 stuffed breasts
Servings: 4
Calories: 371
Fat: 17.5 G
Carbs: 11 G
Protein: 42.7 G

  • 2 slices center cut bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 3 jalapeños, chopped (remove seeds for milder)
  • 3 oz 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened
  • 4 oz reduced fat shredded cheddar jack (Sargento)
  • 2 tbsp chopped scallions
  • 8 thin sliced skinless chicken breasts, 3 oz each
  • 1/2 cup Italian seasoned whole wheat breadcrumbs
  • 1 1/2 juicy limes, juice of
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • salt and fresh pepper
  • olive oil non-stick spray

Season  chicken with salt and pepper. Preheat oven to 450 and spray a cookie sheet or baking dish with nonstick spray.

Combine cream cheese, cheddar, scallions, jalapenos, and bacon crumbles in a medium bowl. Spread 2 tablespoons of the cream cheese mixture on each piece of chicken. Roll each and secure the ends with a toothpick to prevent the cheese from escaping too much.

Place breadcrumbs in a bowl. In a second bowl, combine olive oil, lime juice, salt and pepper.

Dip chicken in lime-oil mixture, then dredge in breadcrumbs before placing on a cookie sheet or in a baking dish. Repeat with remaining chicken. Bake 22-25 minutes until juices run clear.

Speaking of spicing it up, here we are in Mexico! I'm a little behind on posting cruise pictures—so much has happened since then--but it would be a shame not to share! Grades and I had the good fortune of spending Valentine's day in a tropical paradise! We spent one day in Costa Maya and the other in Cozumel. Both were absolutely beautiful and relaxing destinations! We sure soaked up all of that fun in the sun. And you can bet that Gradon applied sunscreen beforehand.

We even got all sappy and bought cheap love rings with our initials hand-engraved in them. The guy had been making them since childhood. It was a pretty cool sight to see. We keep them on our keychains now.

When evening fell, we dined at the lovely Venetian Restaurant on board where we requested a double serving of the ship's most decadent chocolate molten lava-like dessert. (Gradon's absolute favorite) We ever crashed the crazy “white hot party” where everyone wore white and danced beneath black lights. I fear that this Valentine's Day will be hard to top!

1 comment:

  1. Love the pics! The ring idea is so cute and the white part looks like fun. XOXO