Have you ever had pimento cheese? An important caveat: have you ever had home-made pimento cheese? That neon colored sludge from the supermarket absolutely doesn’t count–that’s the stuff that gives pimento cheese a bad name. That junk forces anyone who doesn’t live in the south to think pimento cheese is somehow vile stuff. The real deal is not even close. Its nothing short of incredible really. Its a mix of sweet, sour, tart, rich, creamy cheeseiness.
Pimento cheese is actually very simple to make and uses a mix of other cheeses as a base (so don’t worry, you don’t have to make cheese from scratch for this). The end result is a cheese that is easily used as a dip or a spread. I like to fill omelettes with it and to use it as a topping on both burgers and sandwiches. Other common uses are on crackers and as the filling for grilled cheese sandwiches. Its works well in spreadable form or for melting applications. Ultimately, its fairly versatile stuff.
Flavor-wise, this rendition had a good mix of tart, dill notes, sweet pepper highlights, and a solid, smoky, cheddar backbone.
If you can work a food processor and have 5 minutes, you can whip up a batch of this.
You can find the original recipe here
- 1 lb sharp cheddar cheese
- 1/2 lb Monterey Jack cheese
- 2 medium kosher dill pickles
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 4 oz jar of pimentos, drained
- 3 Tbsp mayonnaise (if you have the option, Duke’s is an awesome brand)
Coarsely chop up all of the ingredients and throw all but the mayo into a food processor. Pulse until you’re happy with how well things are mixed. You don’t want to go for complete homogeneity–some chunk/texture is a good thing in pimento cheese (I think). Then, incorporate the mayo and transfer the mixture to the fridge for 30 minutes before serving so that things can firm up a bit more.