Nothing puts a smile on people’s faces faster while at the same time setting their tongues ablaze, like these grilled jalapeño poppers. Sans cheese, and debuting with a snazzy new look, these Shiny Happy Poppers are every bit a modern twist on what still remains a classic firebrand when it comes to pregame appetizers. However, a word to the wise: Having an ice-cold beer nearby is highly recommended, should this blaze get out of control.
- 12 jalapeños*
- 1 cup cooked white or brown rice
- 1 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 tablespoons smooth or grainy vegan Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder, or
- 1 medium-size clove garlic, peeled and pressed
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves, or 2 teaspoons dried
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
- Hot sauce of choice, for drizzling
*Note: You can temper the spiciness of jalapeños—at least somewhat—by removing the seeds and especially the white inner ribs, before stuffing them with the beans and rice.
Heat the grill to medium-high.
Stem the jalapeños and cut one lengthwise slit in each pepper. Pull out the seeds and inner ribs with your fingers (wear rubber gloves if your skin is sensitive to handling hot peppers). In a medium-size bowl, combine the rice, black beans, mustard, garlic powder, and thyme. Stir until well mixed.
With an appropriately sized spoon, fill the jalapeños with the rice mixture. Place the peppers on a large sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil. Drizzle the peppers with the olive oil and then with the hot sauce, to taste.
Fold the foil into a packet with the peppers in one layer. Grill the packet for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the peppers are soft and the rice filling is hot. Serve at once.