Notes: Midge Stapleton of Anacortes, Washington, often starts these appetizers 1 day ahead. Complete the recipe through step 3; cover and chill poppers. To serve, uncover and continue.
1/2 cup (4 oz.) fat-free cream cheese or neufchatel (light) cream cheese
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/3 cup minced green onions
3 tablespoons shredded cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon lime juice
About 3/4 pound fresh jalapeño chilies (14 or 15, equal-size), rinsed
2 large egg whites
1 cup cornflake crumbs
How to Make It
In a bowl, use a fork to blend cream cheese, garlic, onions, cheddar cheese, and lime juice.
Wearing rubber gloves, cut chilies in half lengthwise. With a knife, cut seed lump from beneath the stem inside each chili, leaving stem end in place (to form a cup). Pull out and discard veins. Fill chili halves equally with cheese mixture, spreading surface smooth.
In a small bowl, whisk egg whites until slightly frothy. Put cornflake crumbs in another small bowl. Dip filled chili halves, 1 at a time, in egg whites, then roll in crumbs. Set chilies slightly apart on a 12- by 15-inch baking sheet, filling the sheet.
Bake in a 350° oven until crumbs are slightly darker brown and crisp, about 20 minutes. Serve hot or warm.