4ozmozzarella cheeseshredded from a block (please see notes)
4ozwhite cheddarshredded from a block (or monterey jack cheese)
2 - 3jalapenosseeds removed, chopped finely (about ½ cup)
6ozof baconsliced finely and cooked to crispy bits
Salt to season
Spiced flour mixrecipe below
1 ½ - 2cupspanko breadcrumbsor gluten free breadcrumbs
Spiced Flour Mix
½cupAP flouror gluten free flour
Oil for deep frying
Crispy Cheese Jalapeno Bacon Bites
Place all the ingredients in a bowl and mix to combine well. Add salt to season ONLY if needed. I add extra hot sauce, and usually don't need to add extra salt.
Using a spoon, portion out the cheese mix and make 1 inch balls. Place the balls on a tray, and freeze for about 10 - 15 minutes until they are firm (but not frozen). You can keep them covered in the fridge overnight as well.
Get the dredging station ready. Mix all the ingredients for the spiced flour mix. Lightly whisk the eggs, and place the panko crumbs in a plate.
Coat the chilled cheese balls in the spiced flour mix, and then coat with eggs, followed by the flour again, and the egg mix again, for a double coating. This created an extra crunchy coating (flour - egg - flour - egg).
Finally coat the cheese balls with the panko crumbs and set aside until all the cheese balls are coated.
At this stage, you can place the cheese balls in the fridge overnight (in a single layer, on a tray, covered with plastic wrap) until you are ready to fry them and serve. OR you can freeze them as well. However, if you do freeze them, allow the cheese balls to thaw in the fridge overnight before frying.
Heat enough oil to deep fry the cheese balls, to 350°F/180°C. Deep fry, without over-crowding the pan, for about 1 - 1 ½ minutes.
Remove the cheese balls from the oil and let them drain for a couple of minutes. Serve warm with dipping sauce. Enjoy!
Note about the cheese - it’s better to use cheese that you shred yourself from a block, rather than using pre-shredded cheese. But if you can only find pre-shredded cheese or it's more convenient, that's fine too.
Note about freezing - make sure the cheese balls are refrigerated OR frozen on a baking tray, in a single layer. Wrap the tray well with plastic wrap to prevent freezer burns.