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Irresistible Texas Twinkies

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Texas Twinkies are a savory, irresistible twist on jalapeño poppers, wrapped in bacon with a succulent beef filling and a sweet BBQ glaze. This recipe cleverly uses pre-cooked brisket, making it a perfect dish for utilizing leftover meat. Ideal for gatherings, barbecues, or a special treat, these poppers will dazzle your guests with their bold flavors and satisfying texture.

Ingredients

  • 12 medium jalapeño peppers
  • 12 tablespoons cream cheese, softened
  • 1 ½ pounds cooked chopped brisket
  • 12 slices thick-cut bacon
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • ½ (12 ounce) bottle BBQ sauce

Directions

  1. Prepare the Jalapeños: Preheat your oven to 300°F (150°C). Carefully slice each jalapeño in a “T” shape and remove the seeds and membranes. Place them on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes.
  2. Cooling: After baking, immerse the jalapeños in ice water briefly to remove residual oil from the seeds, then pat them dry with a paper towel.
  3. Stuff and Wrap: Increase the oven temperature to 350°F (175°C). Stuff each jalapeño with 1 tablespoon of cream cheese and about 2 ounces of brisket. Wrap each stuffed pepper with a slice of bacon. Arrange them on a baking sheet and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Bake and Glaze: Bake for 30 minutes, then remove from the oven and brush each popper with BBQ sauce. Return to the oven and bake for an additional 5 minutes until the bacon is crispy and the sauce is bubbly.

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FAQs

Q: Can I substitute the brisket with another type of meat? A: Absolutely! While brisket is traditional for Texas Twinkies, you can use pulled pork or even chicken as tasty alternatives.

Q: What if I don’t have a BBQ sauce? A: You can use any type of glaze you like. A mix of ketchup, honey, and a dash of Worcestershire sauce can make a great homemade substitute.

Q: How can I make this dish spicier? A: To increase the heat, add a pinch of cayenne pepper to the cream cheese or use a spicier BBQ sauce.

Q: Can I prepare Texas Twinkies in advance? A: Yes, you can prepare them up to the point of baking and store them in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. When you’re ready to serve, simply bake as directed. This can help you manage your time better if you’re planning for a party or gathering.

Q: Is there a vegetarian alternative for the brisket filling? A: For a vegetarian version, you can substitute the brisket with a mixture of smoked tofu, black beans, and corn. This will give you a similar texture and a smoky flavor that pairs well with the cream cheese and jalapeños.

Q: How can I ensure the bacon is crispy every time? A: To get crispy bacon, make sure the bacon is not overlapping when you wrap the jalapeños. Additionally, you can place the wrapped jalapeños on a rack over your baking sheet to allow air circulation around the bacon, helping it to crisp up evenly.

Q: What sides go well with Texas Twinkies? A: These poppers are quite rich and flavorful, so they pair nicely with lighter sides. Consider serving them with a fresh green salad, coleslaw, or cucumber salad to balance the richness. For a heartier meal, they go great with cornbread or a simple potato salad.

Q: How do I handle the heat from the jalapeños during preparation? A: When handling jalapeños, it’s wise to wear gloves to prevent irritation from the capsaicin, which is the compound that makes peppers hot. If you touch your eyes or sensitive skin after handling jalapeños, it can cause discomfort.

Q: Can Texas Twinkies be frozen for later use? A: Yes, you can freeze the prepared but unbaked Texas Twinkies. Wrap each popper individually in plastic wrap and place them in a freezer bag. They can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. Bake them from frozen, adding a few extra minutes to the cooking time.

Conclusion

Texas Twinkies are a delightful and hearty appetizer that combines classic flavors in an innovative way. With their creamy, meaty filling, encased in crispy bacon and topped with a tangy glaze, these poppers are sure to be a hit at any event. Whether serving at a party or enjoying at home, these Texas Twinkies bring a taste of the South right to your kitchen. Enjoy crafting this mouthwatering dish and watch them disappear from the plate!

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