Smoky heat and cool lime crema make these Chorizo Chile Poppers irresistible little bites.
Did you catch any of our Miami fun on Instagram last week? We were in town for the BlogHer Food conference and delighted in dipping our toes in the sands of South Beach, eating our way through the flavors of the city and meeting and catching up with friends, both old and new. I had never visited Miami before, but you can be sure I’ll be back.
One of the highlights of our trip was a sumptuous dinner on Miami Beach with McCormick Spices. I’m sure you all probably have a bottle or two (or many more) of McCormick spices in your pantry right now. For the last 14 years, McCormick has assembled a flavor forecast to help identify emerging flavor trends across the world. For you and me, this is great, because not only do they clue us in to delicious new flavors but they also give us examples of how to use those flavors in our everyday cooking. That’s usually where I get stuck – what do I do with this? – so sitting down to dinner with the McCormick folks was a huge learning experience for me. We walked away with lots of new ideas, but we knew we had to share one of the highlights of our meal with you immediately. Meet one of my new favorite appetizers: Chorizo Chile Poppers.
Now let’s level set here for a minute. I like a bit of spice and heat in my food, but I’m a major wimp compared to my husband who will put anything spicy in his mouth short of a burning blaze. These Chorizo Chile Poppers have a bit of smoky heat but the spice is balanced perfectly with the lime cream sauce. Seriously. Amazing. And really pretty simple to put together. Combine the chorizo and other filling ingredients in a food processor, stuff the peppers and bake. Mix the cream sauce while the peppers are baking and you’ll have warm appetizers for your next party in a snap. They’re also a fun twist on appetizers for folks looking to minimize carbs and/or avoid gluten (Mom, these are for you!).
P.S. These Chorizo Chile Poppers also pair well with our Miami-inspired Strawberry-Kiwi Daiquiris, in case you are wondering. Not that we enjoyed them together at lunch last week…
2 jars (10 ounces each) pickled sweet peppers, drained, tops and most of seeds removed
¼ cup crumbed queso blanco or finely shredded monterey jack cheese
¼ cup sour cream
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a sheet tray with foil and set aside.
Place chorizo, tomato, quinoa, garlic, cilantro, 1½ teaspoons ancho chile pepper and chile powder in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until thoroughly combined.
Stuff peppers with about 1 teaspoon (give or take, depending on the size of your peppers) of the chorizo mixture. Sprinkle stuffed peppers with queso fresco and bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until chorizo is cooked through. Remove from oven and set aside.
Combine the sour cream, lime juice and remaining ½ teaspoon ancho chile pepper in a small bowl. Drizzle on top of or as a side to the peppers.
You may have chorizo stuffing left over depending on the size of your peppers.