Smoked White Fish Jalapeño Poppers

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AuthorThe FishmongerCategoryDifficultyAdvanced

This recipe is a twist on the traditional jalapeno popper. These poppers are an inside-out fish spread appetizer - spicy pepper outside with the creamy smoke fish surprise on the inside!

I used a Davy Crockett Pellet Smoker to smoke Mahi prior to making the poppers. Check out this YouTube video to see how it's done. You can also purchase pre-smoked whitefish at a local fish market or Jewish Deli. 

I stuff these poppers with a slightly different version of the Maximo Seafood Shack Whitefish Spread - season the fish prior to smoking, and spray with a mist of rum-based lime juice along the way, making the final texture a bit less dry. I also added cheddar cheese to the cream cheese mix, and omitted celery and carrots.

You can also watch our YouTube video to see how I made the poppers. 

I challenge Joey "Jaws" Chestnut to break his current world popper eating record on these tasty Armadillo Eggs!

Yields4 Servings
Prep Time2 hrsCook Time20 minsTotal Time2 hrs 20 mins

Popper Ingredients
 ¾ lb smoked Mahi or similar whitefish.
 8 medium sized jalapeños
 ½ cup red onion, cut into quarters
 8 oz cream cheese
 3 oz shredded cheddar cheese
 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
 1 tbsp key lime or lime juice
 2 cups frying oil. I prefer to use peanut oil (or Grapeseed Oil) and a Fry Daddy. Be sure to use as much oil as you need to completely submerge peppers during the cooking process. You will also need a cooking thermometer to measure cooking oil temperature to 350 degrees.
Batter Ingredients
 1.50 cups corn flour
 ¾ cup cornstarch
 1 cup lager beer
 2 eggs, beaten
Rub Blend (good to make in bulk for future use)
  cup brown sugar
  cup dried minced garlic
  cup dried granulated onion
 1 tbsp fine sea salt
 4 tbsp dried granulated lemon peel
  cup dried dill
  cup paprika
 2 tbsp celery seed
 ½ cup dried parsley
 ¼ cup medium-grind black pepper
Utensils or Tools
 1 food processor
 1 rubber spatula
 1 tongs/fork for handing peppers
 34 medium sized bowls for preparing ingredients
 plate and paper towels for draining fried peppers
 neoprene or latex gloves for handing peppers if skin is sensitive to hot peppers

Instructions
1

Add oil to fry daddy and set heat to 350 degrees.

2

Cut fish into small pieces and run through food processor until it turns to a fine texture.

3

Remove fish from processor and set aside in bowl.

4

Add onion to food processor and pulse until minced. You will need to stop the process once or twice and move the onion down toward the blade with a rubber spatula. Remove onion when processed and add to fish in bowl.

5

Add cream cheese, cheddar cheese, Worcestershire Sauce and lime juice to processor. Mix until all ingredients are fully blended together. Add fish and onion back to processor with these ingredients and process until just blended. Remove all ingredients and place back in bowl.

6

Cut tops off jalapenos and remove seeds with a small knife by running knife along the inside edge of the pepper.

7

Whisk 1 C corn flour, cornstarch and 1 C of beer in bowl. Hold the other ½ C of the beer and add later if the batter begins to stiffen up during the process.

8

Add remaining corn flour to separate bowl.

9

Push fish spread ingredients into jalapenos.

10

Using a fork with outer point stuck down inside of popper from top of pepper, roll jalapenos one at a time first through egg batter, then through flour, then through beer batter being careful to not touch the outside through the process as the batter can easily come off the jalapeno skin.

11

Drop jalapeno in 350-degree oil. Cook for 6 to 7 minutes moving the peppers around a bit through the process.

12

Once peppers begin to brown, remove and place on paper towel. Peppers will remain hot for at least 5 minutes, so be sure to allow to cool a bit before serving to avoid scalding.

Ingredients

Popper Ingredients
 ¾ lb smoked Mahi or similar whitefish.
 8 medium sized jalapeños
 ½ cup red onion, cut into quarters
 8 oz cream cheese
 3 oz shredded cheddar cheese
 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
 1 tbsp key lime or lime juice
 2 cups frying oil. I prefer to use peanut oil (or Grapeseed Oil) and a Fry Daddy. Be sure to use as much oil as you need to completely submerge peppers during the cooking process. You will also need a cooking thermometer to measure cooking oil temperature to 350 degrees.
Batter Ingredients
 1.50 cups corn flour
 ¾ cup cornstarch
 1 cup lager beer
 2 eggs, beaten
Rub Blend (good to make in bulk for future use)
  cup brown sugar
  cup dried minced garlic
  cup dried granulated onion
 1 tbsp fine sea salt
 4 tbsp dried granulated lemon peel
  cup dried dill
  cup paprika
 2 tbsp celery seed
 ½ cup dried parsley
 ¼ cup medium-grind black pepper
Utensils or Tools
 1 food processor
 1 rubber spatula
 1 tongs/fork for handing peppers
 34 medium sized bowls for preparing ingredients
 plate and paper towels for draining fried peppers
 neoprene or latex gloves for handing peppers if skin is sensitive to hot peppers

Directions

Instructions
1

Add oil to fry daddy and set heat to 350 degrees.

2

Cut fish into small pieces and run through food processor until it turns to a fine texture.

3

Remove fish from processor and set aside in bowl.

4

Add onion to food processor and pulse until minced. You will need to stop the process once or twice and move the onion down toward the blade with a rubber spatula. Remove onion when processed and add to fish in bowl.

5

Add cream cheese, cheddar cheese, Worcestershire Sauce and lime juice to processor. Mix until all ingredients are fully blended together. Add fish and onion back to processor with these ingredients and process until just blended. Remove all ingredients and place back in bowl.

6

Cut tops off jalapenos and remove seeds with a small knife by running knife along the inside edge of the pepper.

7

Whisk 1 C corn flour, cornstarch and 1 C of beer in bowl. Hold the other ½ C of the beer and add later if the batter begins to stiffen up during the process.

8

Add remaining corn flour to separate bowl.

9

Push fish spread ingredients into jalapenos.

10

Using a fork with outer point stuck down inside of popper from top of pepper, roll jalapenos one at a time first through egg batter, then through flour, then through beer batter being careful to not touch the outside through the process as the batter can easily come off the jalapeno skin.

11

Drop jalapeno in 350-degree oil. Cook for 6 to 7 minutes moving the peppers around a bit through the process.

12

Once peppers begin to brown, remove and place on paper towel. Peppers will remain hot for at least 5 minutes, so be sure to allow to cool a bit before serving to avoid scalding.

Smoked White Fish Jalapeño Poppers

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