Armadillo Eggs – the Agony!
I like trying new (and simple, please!) things to cook, so I've told my housemates if there's something in particular that interests me, send me the recipe. The first I heard of armadillo eggs was when a housemate excitedly showed me a near-completely graphical — and very simple — recipe for them. An idle google search turned up an amusing story of a woman whose coworker declined to try one because he "didn't like eggs," though once he was reassured that armadillos did not actually lay eggs — they're mammals, duh! — he ate one and declared them delicious. There were also some interesting options suggested, such as only using jalapeño peppers, or wrapping the peppers in spiced sausage or just bacon, or only using cream cheese. Here's the text-only version of the original recipe I received:
Armadillo Eggs. Get some chillis [sic]. Stuff them with cheddar or other good cheese. Wrap them in a spiced burger patty with onions. Hamburger: 1kg meat 1 cup of white bread crumbs 1 egg. Add what you like to the hamburger, I add salt, pepper and sliced onions. And maybe sliced bacon. Grill them (or bake them by low temperature). Put BBQ sauce on them after a while. 45-60 minutes on the grill or in the oven at 150?C should be a good try… just check if the cheese is running out. When they look like this… [graphic of the cooked armadillo egg] Enjoy! by seylow.
I decided to stick mostly to the original recipe for my first try. The cheeses I experimented with were crumbled gorgonzola, sharp cheddar, and smoked gouda. My regular grocery store is in the midst of rebuilding itself, so I only found three types of chilies: jalapeños, poblanos, and… I think cubanelles? That was fine, though — I grabbed one of each and decided if I had meat left over I'd just make it into a meatloaf.
So, first I mixed up the meat, changing the recipe by adding a package of dried Trader Joe's onion soup mix instead of onion, salt, and pepper; and two torn up slices of Dave's (really delicious!) Killer Bread instead of white bread crumbs. Next I carefully cut off the top of the peppers, then just as carefully cut and scooped out the innards. Then I set the peppers aside and cleaned up the sink… for a very good reason.
You know how cookbooks always say to be careful when chopping onions because they'll make you cry? Well, I've never actually had that happen to me — but I now know that chopping up peppers over the sink releases oils or gasses or whatever-the-heck it is… which gives me a weird cough-y feeling in the back of my throat. So yeah: cleaning the sink. As I'm finished rinsing it down, I absently rub the corner of my eye.
Whoa — PAAAIIIN! Big mistake! Plus I wear contact lenses, so I'm thinking it might be a real good idea to get them out soonest. Okay, run to the bathroom, wash my hands very well with soap, fill the little contact lens container with the solution — and I'm ready. Very carefully I reach to neatly pluck the lens out of my eye.
Sooo… guess what pepper oils apparently do, that I didn't know? They soak into the skin, so just washing your hands well with soap and water isn't enough. JESUS H. FLIPPING CHRIST ON A FLAMING RUBBER POGOSTICK OW OW OW OW FRIKKIN' OOOOWWW!!
Thank goodness for saline solution! Standing there over the sink and running the saline steadily over my poor eye for about five minutes finally rinsed it all out. I learned my lesson, too: I was more careful with the next contact lens, taking it out differently. But wowsers, that was really un… pleasant!
So… yeah. We ate out that night.