I do not like basketball.
There are lots of reasons, but I’ll list, oh, three. Three is a good, round number.
1. The uniforms. They’re baggy, they’re shiny, and they are nothing like what the players in the 1970s wore. Now THAT was a sport, keeping those tiny little shorts from riding up while running at top speed and bouncing a ball.
2. It’s a filler sport, like every other sport that isn’t football. No one tailgates a basketball game. No one really even understands basketball. So much running, and jumping, and intentionally knocking the bejeezus out of someone on purpose, just to stop the clock. It’s weird. It’s not even sexy, like hockey, where the enforcers yank each others shirts up over their heads and they try to fight on ice skates. At least that’s entertainment. And sexy. Yes, definitely sexy.
3. The sound. The sound of a basketball game is enough to send me right over the edge. Squeeeeeeek. Squeeeeeeek. Those freaking shoes squeaking up and down the court is nerve grating and it’s all I can hear.
I had to go over to the ESPN website to even see if the March Madness thing was still going on. Heck, I don’t know these things. I know there is a bar in Grapevine, Texas with leather loungers (and about the best darned nachos you’ve even eaten) that will be the host to some sexy men in gray tee shirts, but whether they are watching Bball, I can’t say.
ESPN says yes.
But if you can’t afford a ticket to Dallas, and the ridiculous cab fare over to Grapevine, well, I get it. It’s a pretty big expense for nachos and young men with just the right amount of facial hair. Not saying it’s not worth it, just saying I GET it.
So I made you something that will make up for it. And? It’s perfect for the Final Four games.
Spicy. Creamy. Crispy. Flaky.
Cheesy Bacon and Jalapeno Pockets.
Kraft recently asked me to create a recipe for you, using the brand new Philadelphia Spicy Jalapeno Spread. It just hit stores a couple of weeks ago, so – brand spanking new. And by spanking, I do mean for your taste buds.
Punched full of fresh jalapeno bits for an intense flavor, I can see this spread being really versatile. Use it in dips, as a spread – anywhere you want a little heat and deliciousness.
For my recipe though, I went the way of a country girls spanakopita. I used the Philly Jalapeno Spread, cheddar cheese, fresh jalapenos, and of course – BACON – all wrapped up in buttery phyllo dough.
A plate of these at a tailgate would be awesome. But, tailgates aren’t happening again for oh, 5 more months, so, sitting around in loungers listening to squeaky shoes will have to be reason enough.
Get on it!
Cheesy Bacon & Jalapeno Pockets
- 1/2 pack Athens Phyllo Dough Sheets
- 1/2 cup Philadelphia Spicy Jalapeno Cream Cheese Spread
- 12 pieces cooked bacon, chopped
- 3 jalapenos, seeded and sliced
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 stick butter, melted
- Prepare a sheet pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Flatten one sheet of phyllo dough, and brush with melted butter. Place another layer of dough on top of the first piece, brush with butter. Repeat with a third layer. (If desired, you can do 4 layers, but we chose to do 3 and got great results.)
- Using a sharp knife, divide the prepared phyllo sheets into 3 even strips, roughly 2-3 inches wide and 10-12 inches in length, depending on phyllo brand. Place a large spoonful of Philly Spicy Jalapeno Cream Cheese at the bottom end of each strip. Top that with a sprinkle of cheese, bacon, and jalapeno. Fold over, like making a paper football, triangular shaped, until you reach the end of the strip. Place on prepared baking sheet and brush with a bit more butter. Repeat process until all filling or phyllo sheets are used up. Refrigerate until ready to use, or, bake right away.
- When ready to bake, preheat oven to 400. Place in oven for 18-20 minutes, or until golden brown. Enjoy!
I have to say, I was thrilled to be asked to to participate in the Spicy Jalapeno Blogger Program. Why?
Well, I love Philly. I always have a fridge full of it, because it’s so versatile. Cream sauces, cheesecakes, icings, fillings – just love it. PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese has been around since 1872, and is made with fresh milk and real wholesome cream. They source from farmers that are local to their production, making sure their products are amazingly fresh…and that’s something I can get into. It’s nice to see companies I know and love being smart, and smart sourcing.
Check out this fact – I had no idea…
From Farm to Our Fridge in Just Six Days: Fresh milk from nearby farms is made into
cream cheese and refrigerated at PHILADELPHIA creameries in Beaver Dam, Wis. and
Lowville, NY in just six days. Six days? I can’t eve make my bed in 6 days. Something else I didn’t know? No preservatives are found in the cream cheese brick varieties. Huh.
For their flavored spreads, Philly uses fresh ingredients, like jalapenos, nuts, honey, and herbs. So many varieties!
Do you have a favorite? If so, what do you do with it? And have you tried this new Jalapeno blend? How do you think you’d use it? I can’t wait to come up with more things to do with it!
For more great Philly recipes, head on over to CreamCheese.com – you’ll find plenty!
Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Philadelphia Spicy Jalapeno Cream Cheese Spread. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Especially about basketball.