Pick the dark meat (more juicy and flavorful in my opinion) from the chicken and cut into small chunks. Place into a large bowl.
Cut Jalapenos into lengthwise and scoop out the seeds and white jalapeno flesh to desired heat range. The more seeds and white insides you leave, the hotter it will be. Using a small spoon, press cream cheese into the pepper halves. Wrap each half with half a piece of bacon (I prefer smaller jalapenos, so I only have to use half a piece of bacon, and they’re usually spicier). Use a toothpick if you are worried about the bacon staying on – just don’t forget to remove them after grilling.
Although some people bake these, the best way to cook them is on the grill. Heat your grill to 350-400°F and place all the peppers cream cheese side down. Have a water bottle handy and watch the peppers closely, as the dripping bacon grease will cause a lot of flare ups – use long tongs. Cook face down for approx. 5-8 minutes depending on how hot your grill gets (I know my grill is like my wife – there are hot spots to watch out for). Check them occasionally and flip them to the other side for 4-5 more minutes of grilling. When the bacon looks done on all sides, remove them from the grill. They are ready to serve just like this. In fact, in my house, they don’t make it beyond this point… ever.
From here you’ve got choices.
#1 Serve them (that’s what I’d do). You can’t go wrong with grilled bacon, peppers, and cream cheese.
#2 If you are feeling energetic, dice them up into small chunks and toss about 13-15 into the bowl with the chicken. Add about a 1/2 cup of freshly shredded sharp cheddar cheese and massage the mixture, adding more cream cheese if needy (for stickiness if you are going to fry them).
If you want to deep fry them, roll the mixture into 2-ounce balls, about the size of golf balls (should make about 12-14) – we use an ice cream scooper for consistency. Place the flour, eggs, and bread crumbs in 3 separate bowls. Roll each ball in the flour, then the egg and then the bread crumbs. Set aside. When the oil is hot fry the chicken balls in batches. Cook for about 1-2 minutes per batch or until golden. Remove the poppers to a paper towel lined plate to drain the excess oil. Serve them up with your favorite pico de gallo, guacamole, or hot sauce.
#3 Forget the bread crumbs, and use the mixture as the inside of a chimichanga, the topping on a tostada, or on some eggs for breakfast – you can’t go wrong.