Saturday, March 17, 2012

baked mozzarella cigars with jalapeño cilantro aioli

I would have called them mozzarella sticks, but to me that implies breading. And deep frying. And so much deliciousness.

These are baked though, and remind me more (in structure, at least) of a local Lebanese restaurant's version of mozzarella sticks, which they wrapped in phyllo and called cigars. So, I'm going with it.

Since it's St Patrick's Day and all, I figured I should post something green. This isn't remotely Irish, and there's a possibility I realized the dip was green after the fact, but that's neither here nor there. The dip is very similar to one I had at this awesome hole-in-the-wall restaurant (seriously guys, it's attached to a motel. Oh and they take reservations, but they won't ask you about it when you walk in. Just sit anywhere you'd like). If you live nearby, you absolutely need to go. Order the tequeñones (their cheese sticks). Maybe some fried yucca, while you're at it. And definitely go for a grilled arepa.

If you don't live nearby, or really like cheese (or both), make these. They should hold you over for a bit.

Baked Mozzarella Cigars with Jalapeño Cilantro Aioli

1/2 package won ton wrappers
2 mozzarella sticks

Preheat oven to 375*. Lay out wrappers on a flat surface. Slice mozzarella sticks in half lengthwise, and then cut into pieces about 1/4" shorter than the won ton wrappers on each side, leaving room to fold the wrappers over. Fold the sides over the cheese, then roll from the bottom up (like a burrito), securing the roll with a little water brushed across the top side. Place on a baking sheet, preferably on parchment paper or silpat, bake about 15 minutes or until golden.

For the Sauce

1/3 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup cilantro
1/2 jalapeño
1-2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil

Toss all ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth. Try not to eat all of it before the cheese sticks are done.

It's Recipe Madness! Check out these blogs for more daily food updates all this month!
The Cheesefries Stand Alone
Food Feminism Life
Life's Little Epiphanies
And if you want to play along, just leave a comment!  

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