As I have previously mentioned, my sister is to be wed to her long term partner of 11 years, Iain, on May 10th. They will be married in the church local to where she and I grew up, and therefore local to where I am now living. The weekend just gone was the 3rd Reading of The Banns, so they were home to witness that, which gave us the perfect excuse for a big family dinner- and who could knock a texmex!
My Mum whipped up barbeque ribs and a childhood favourite of mine- Chilli Lasagne!
Just looking at the picture of it fills me with a hungry kind of joy! My Mum does this the best (but maybe that’s more to do with my inner child?) however I did cook a big batch of this myself for Josh and Stephen a few months back. But that’s another recipe for another time!
With the wedding round the corner, everyone is trying to get into their best shape possible right now. My contribution to the meal was not a healthy side-dish by any means, but while I whipped up the original version, I also stole the recipe for a healthier version from this nice lady. What Tex Mex would be complete without Jalapeño Poppers!
- Many fresh, whole jalapeños
- Half fat cream cheese (I used Philadelphia, and mixed things up by also using some chilli philly!)
- Breadcrumbs (the shop was all out of ‘Golden’ so what you see here is done with standard ‘natural’ breadcrumbs)
- Grated cheddar
- 2 eggs
- Plain flour
- Smoked bacon (optional)
- A little salt, a little pepper, a little milk
Let’s get our jalapeño on!!!!!!!!!
1. Half your jalapeños and remove the white thing and most/all of the seeds from inside. Try to keep the stems attached if you can. Decorative and all that.
2. Using a spreading knife, neatly fill with your selected cream cheese.
3. Sprinkle with grated cheddar. Squash it down a little bit so it sticks firmly to the cream cheese.
4. If you are using bacon, dice some up and add it to some/all of your jalapeños now, again squashing down gently.
5. Set your designated “healthy” jalapeños to one side, then get three small bowls. Fill one with plain flour (and a pinch of salt and pepper), one with bread crumbs, and in the third crack your two eggs and whip with a small amount of milk.
6. Take each jalapeño one by one and coat it (COVER it) in the egg, and then the flour. Do not do anything with the breadcrumbs at this stage! Lay on a wire cooling rack for 5 minutes for them to dryish.
7. Now, take each one individually again. Cover in egg, and THIS TIME SKIP THE FLOUR and cover in the breadcrumbs. Leave to set for 5 minutes, then repeat until perfectly covered in breadcrumbs! Normally only once or twice more.
8. Place on a baking tray, and bring their healthy friends over to join them.
9. Bake on 200c for about 30 minutes or until golden on top.
10. Serve and enjoy! I know I did…
The Reading of The Banns
The following morning was an adventure in itself. Although my sister is getting married in a church, she (like the rest of ours and Iain’s family) is not religious. We chose to go to this church when we were children, and it does feel natural her being wed there! But neither of us have been to a service now for about 18 years.
Unfortunately, Iain was unwell with a flu the following day, so it was just me and Hana present for the bann reading. We dressed nicely and went along bright and early, as television has taught us to do with church, and were relieved when there were no objections following the banns being read at the start of the service. Although not particularly clued in with religious practises, we are both very polite and, in many ways, stereo-typically British. We therefore happily sat through the next hour, though not without a few moments of confusion, some more transparent than others! Certain selected readings were more judgemental to other religions and forms of prayer than we had expected (to which our shock was quite clear), others were just judgemental in general. Then there was the genuine skill of us figuring out the tune to Hymns as they went along. Oh, there was a beautiful moment of “showing your love” where the congregation started grabbing one another and wishing well which caught us rather off guard. THEN there was communion, which one member off the congregation encouraged us to approach, however the vicar politely (albeit after rather suddenly grabbing our heads and blessing us) sent us to sit back down again (though not before we had sipped the wine). Awkward. Finally, although I missed it, I understand from her telling that my sister’s response to the arrival of the collection plate was something very special indeed.
What fun to experience a day-in-the-life! Religion, and the many ways in which it is expressed, is certainly something that intrigues me and I did not go without some education on this day! Furthermore, it was very touching for us to be accepted by the congregation in the way we were, in spite of our screamingly obvious ignorance in the area. But, above all, it was a great morning of fun with my sister and a special and significant moment in the build up to the wedding. Thank goodness we had such a spread the night before that provided the energy we needed!
Yeah, I know…