Wednesday, May 30, 2007 recipe of the week - pimento cheese

This weeks recipe from my bookmarks is for something I had never tried before and know very little about - Pimento Cheese.

I came across a recipe for Pimento Cheese years and years ago in some cookbook I no longer own. I remember being horrified by the recipe - cheese, cream cheese, mayonnaise and pimentos (although back then I didn't know what a pimento was, and I probably still don't). Made into a sandwich? Gross!

Pimento Cheese is popular, famous even, in the Southern United States. From the bit of research I did there doesn't seem to be a record of any sort of origin, but was/is popular for church gatherings probably because the ingredients were staples to any kitchen, and apparently it keeps very well. Down South you can buy Pimento Cheese premade in the stores, or of course make it at home. And there are enough recipes on the internet that you should have no problem finding one that sounds good to you.

I bookmarked this recipe on February 6 2007. Here is Deborah at Play With Food's recipe for Pimento Cheese.

Holy crap this stuff is good. I decided to give this a try mainly for the simplicity of the ingredients. I knew that even if I didn't like it, Scott would. How could he not? It's cheese and mayonnaise, 2 of his favorite things. I wanted a more chunky look so I did not blend this in a food processor. I shredded the cheese very finely with my microplane, then mixed in the mayonnaise and salsa. I used the smaller amount of the salsa and somewhere between the two amounts of the mayonnaise. I also used roasted red peppers from Superstore. Are pimentos and roasted red peppers the same thing?

This was so tasty and didn't need any salt or pepper or anything. I've seen on the internet that down South not only is Pimento Cheese used as a sandwich filling, but also on crackers, baked potatos, hamburgers, and hot dogs. I even saw one recipe that had it mixed in with cooked corn.

Well, another recipe down, but also another recipe added. While learning more about Pimento Cheese I came across another recipe that had garlic and pickles added in! As soon as Scott eats up this batch, I'll give that a try. Which will probably be tomorrow.

Recipe: Pimento Cheese.


Traci said...

I grew up with pimento cheese all around me. My dad likes to make pimento cheese sandwiches, and my grandma's standby appetizer is pimento cheese spread on tortillas, rolled up and cut into bite size pieces. It's so simple, but so good!

Culinarily Curious said...

I've always been slightly squicked by pimento cheese (for many of the same reasons you suggest) but your pictures and this recipe may just get me to try it. And I L-O-V-E the concept of recipes of the week -- at the rate I'm going, I'd get through my bookmark list in 30 or 40 years! :)

Little Foodie said...

Same here re: the bookmark recipes! This sounds delicious. Love your a-z of food too. Amanda

Deborah Dowd said...

Thanks for trying out my pimento cheese recipe! Your pictures made it look so much better than mine ever could! I will be adding your site to my blogroll!

MidwestMaven said...

So what exactly is a pimento?!? Thanks!

Sara said...

traci - you are a lucky, lucky girl! the pimento and tortilla rolls sound yummy.

cc- oh please try it, it is so good! my is still going up and not down.

lf - thank you!

deborah - no, thank you! this is a great recipe.

mwm - according to food lovers companion, pimento is a large red sweet pepper 3-4 inches long and 2-3 inches wide. the flesh is more sweet and aromatic than a red bell pepper. so what i used was not proper pimento!

Lisa said...

Loved your comment: "Holy crap this stuff is good"! It really is. I learned about it this past year from a coworker friend who's from South Carolina. The recipe I used had the cheese of course, the mayo, a clove of garlic, the pimentos, and dashes of hot sauce, and it was OUT of this world.

Oh, and I almost used roasted peppers in mine; I think that would make it extra-good. For my first time, though, I ended up going traditional. :) Pimentos are peeled red peppers, but I don't believe they're roasted.