We don’t make a big deal outta’ football at my house, but I do love watching the game from time to time. (I was born and raised in Texas after all!) The commercials and performances are almost always worth it, and, truthfully, I’m happy with any reason to make party food! This year I kept my menu simple. Well, except –
I did slide at a hilltop stop sign in my neighborhood down to the road’s edge, which steadily drops off into someone’s house, and ended up getting stuck in the ditch on an icy snow embankment on my way home from the grocery! Seconds after I climbed out of our (new 4WD!) Jeep, a small truck slid in the exact spot I did and then slammed into a tree to the left of me! It was loud and terrifying!! I sprinted over dirty clumps of plowed ice towards the wrecked truck expecting to see a scene straight outta’ 9-1-1, like bloody noses and scraped foreheads, but when I finally made it over to the driver’s side window and all but screamed, “Are you okay?!” the driver just flashed me a reassuring smile, gave me a thumbs up, and then finished eating his cookie.
Turn’s out they were on their way to a client’s house to do some work before they crashed into the tree, and he was generous enough to let me use his cell phone. See, I had thought I’d sneak off around 7:30am to the local Food Lion (less than 5 mi from my house) and grab some jalapenos for the shrimp app I wanted to make for the Super Bowl, a bag of dates the wifey needed for her morning smoothie, and get there and back again before the snow storm really hit our area. So, I left my phone and my coat at home. Hell, I threw on shoes w/o socks even! Then, there I was 40 minutes later shivering in the falling snow, with our new Jeep stuck on the world’s shortest mountain of ice, dangling for dear reputation, having to borrow someone’s phone during a freaking pandemic! After we’d talked to our need-to-knows and let them know we were okay, a tow truck was called. As the two guys waited for their buddy to come and tow their totaled truck, they were kind enough to dig me outta’ the ice so maybe I could get the Jeep out of the ditch! And, as a team, the three of us got her unstuck!! After profusely thanking them and making sure they were okay for the millionth time, I finally and very cautiously crept my way back home. Me and the Jeep got out of the entire ordeal completely unscathed and I have my serendipitous roadside warriors to thank for all their help!
The best part? Food Lion was completely sold out of jalapenos.
But, I was damn sure gonna’ make those bacon wrapped jalapeno shrimp anyway, and especially so now that my life had just flashed before my eyes!
20 gulf shrimp, peeled and deveined
10 slices bacon, cut in half
20 quartered canned jalapeno slices or 5 fresh jalapenos, quartered
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp Tony Chachere’s Seasoning
1/4 tsp black pepper
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a med sized mixing bowl, toss the shrimp with the garlic powder, black pepper, and Tony Chachere’s until well coated.
To prepare the shrimp: take one quarter jalapeno slice and stuff it into the deveined shrimp then wrap it with one half slice of bacon laying it seam side down on the sheet pan as you finish. Repeat until all shrimp are wrapped. Transfer to the oven and bake until the bacon is crisp and the shrimp is cooked through, about 30 to 45 minutes. Serve immediately with ranch dressing or dip of choice.
If desired, drizzle the bacon wrapped jalapeno shrimp with honey, agave, maple syrup or a bit of sweet pepper jelly right out of the oven for a sweet heat variation.
Whatever you do, just don’t slide down an icy hillside to make these!