Translate

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Pimento Cheese

I am headed to the beach for a few days and have a love/hate relationship with the entire process.  I love the beach, love the condo, love the washer/dryer in the condo which makes clothes packing extremely easy, but I hate the getting ready part.

In an effort to keep our costs down I generally cook most of our dinners in. Several of the meals will be grilled fish a salad and rolls, which is easy (I mean, we are going to the beach after all and a seafood shop is just a couple of minutes from the condo.)  But I get tired of cooking on my vacation (It is my vacation also, right?) so I try to have a couple of easily totable things prepared that require little more than a quick warm up. (Spaghetti sauce and Picadillo, and yes I know neither of these are beachy sounding but they travel well and are done!)

However, in addition to dinners, I have to have foods for breakfast and lunch, which is something that is not generally on my radar. I will eat whatever is leftover, so if it means salad for breakfast or a teaspoon of green beans, a tablespoon of baked beans and a slice of cheese for lunch that is fine with me.  Having these other people around changes the dynamics and I will need designated and meal appropriate offerings.  Here again I don't mind a little gathering and placing things for these meals, but there is no way I am going to cook.  Cereal, it's the breakfast of champions  and if anyone wants anything hot there is a McD's about a block from the place.

That leaves lunch as the wildcard of the day.  When we get to the beach I will buy some cold cuts and sliced cheese, but TheHub is very finicky about eating cold sandwiches, and I am not cooking at all in the middle of the day, so I will buy smoked tuna dip, and have some shrimp steamed at the seafood shop for him to nosh on. I will take several types of crackers and I made pimento cheese. (Which is the only sandwich that man will willingly eat unheated)


Pimento cheese is a Southern staple and is about the easiest food in the world to make.  The best ones are made of 2 or 3 different cheeses, mayo with no sugar, and chopped pimentos as a base.  After that whatever your personal taste dictates is what you should put in it.

Basic Pimento Cheese

1 pound less 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
1 cup grated Monteray Jack cheese
(if i had Gouda on hand I would have added a cup of it and 1 less cup of the cheddar)
1/4-1/3 cup mayo (I use 1/4 but a lot of people like it with more mayo)***
1  4 ounce jar chopped pimentos, drained
pepper to taste


Grate cheese and let it sit covered until it reaches room temp.  With a fork stir in the mayo and pimentos. Keep stirring until it reaches the consistency you like.  This is a very personal preference.  I like mine chunky where you get a real cheese "feel" in each bite. Mom, on the other hand puts hers in her food processor and blends it to a mousse like consistency.  Since I am a tactile eater, hers gives me the creeps, but no judgement on anyone who prefers to eat it this way.


TheHub is a pimento cheese purist so the only thing I added was about 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest.  I prefer mine with minced jalapeno, but I left it out cause I am nice like that.  At various times I have added chopped pecans, chopped bacon, minced olives,minced scallions or a combination of them all. It really is all about what you like and what you feel like adding (or have on hand).  Plop it on crackers or spread it on bread as a sandwich filling. Just a note: Grilled pimento cheese sandwiches are to die for! I have even used it in mac and cheese for a true taste treat.

 Try it and you might like it, but realize if you want to be truly southern while eating it make sure you call it pimmenacheeze.

*** This is best if you use a good quality mayonnaise (Screaming Dukes! Dukes! Dukes! Dukes! ) but it can be made with Miracle Whip (gag me with a spoon!)

p.s. I have no affiliation with any products at all. If I mention a brand it is because I use it regularly and like it. So when I mention the mayo it is because I just truly love Dukes.

24 comments:

  1. I love pimiento and cheese sandwich sandwiches and don't pronounce it Southern. This is probably my favorite sandwich. I use Miracle Whip. Gag me with a spoon on mayo. I do add 1/8 tsp of salt. A few years ago, I found that adding salt and the pimientos and mixing it first made the mixture easier to blend with MW, at least for me. Other add-ins are just nasty to me. I try to keep pimientos in the jar in the cabinet at all times.

    One year, a friend and I tried to grow pimientos, but both our plants died. This county supplied King Pharr with all their pimientos when the company was in business..

    ReplyDelete
  2. I have never made cheese spread before, but I will definitely try this. Have a good trip.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I have heard of pimento cheese, but never knew what it was. Thank you for continuing my education.
    I share my world with a fussy foodie too. Which can be challenging.
    I hope you can stay in the cook-free zone while you are away.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Son2 made dinner last night. Tonight is a cooperative grilled fish meal. So far so good!

      Delete
  4. It's your vacation. I think TheHub should get his own food. Everyone should fix their own food. To each his own, and you relax!

    Love,
    Janie

    ReplyDelete
  5. Oh that looks lovely. I must give it a try, and of course one of the joys of living alone is that I can make it exactly how I like it! Enjoy your vacation. Anna

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Anna, the weather is bad but a bad day at the beach is better than a good day at home

      Delete
  6. You have me at Pimento Cheese...... lolz

    ReplyDelete
  7. I don't think pimento cheese is well known in Canada thought it sounds delish! I can't ever remember seeing pimento in a jar. Or anything else for that matter. I'll have to have another look. Could be my eye just passes over them as I've never used them. I do remember, not favourably however, my mother buying "pimento loaf" sliced meat which if I recall correctly contained some orangey things (the cheese I imagine) and red thingies (the pimento?) Couldn't eat the stuff. Not because of the pimentos or cheese but because it was awful - no doubt the cheapest cold cuts my mother could put her hands on! Shiver...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Pimentos are generally on the top shelf here because it is not a best seller. They come in squaty small clear jars

      Delete
  8. DO moms ever get a break? like EVER? Why can't food cook itself and clothes clean themselves?
    I am a bit burned out here. Mind you, Den loves to cook but he has to be in the mood for it. DJ is getting a "last supper" out of him, Mexican food. I'm doing laundry and trying to get ahead since we are leaving on Monday.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Son 3 actually got the entire spaghetti supper meal prepared. Yay him!

      Delete
  9. I love pimento cheese! I had seen it but not really eaten it until moving to the South. I've only made it one time, but I want to rectify that. I am somewhere between you and your mom, texture-wise.

    Hope you guys are having a good time at the beach! We just got back from our vacay at the lake and I think I am more tired than when I left!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The beach was terribly stormy for 2 days then lovely. We enjoyed it. Now I have to get everything here in order. Bleh

      Delete
  10. I discovered pimento cheese a few years ago when I was asked to make sandwiches for a funeral celebration lunch at church. I add a package of cream cheese to my mixture but the other ingredients are similar to yours. Now I always make sure I have a couple of jars of pimentos in my pantry. Does your husband not like a cold turkey sandwich? YUM!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I discovered pimento cheese a few years ago when I was asked to make sandwiches for a funeral celebration lunch at church. I add a package of cream cheese to my mixture but the other ingredients are similar to yours. Now I always make sure I have a couple of jars of pimentos in my pantry. Does your husband not like a cold turkey sandwich? YUM!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He is not keen on cold sandwiches. He will eat them but they are just not something he enjoys. But he loves pimento cheese.

      Delete
  12. Oh yum! My mom used to make that!! I need to find the recipe that she did...

    ReplyDelete
  13. This is pretty much how I make pimennacheese- 😂 Very light on the mayo, sharp cheddar and a little dill relish for a zing. My hubby loves pimennacheese - I should make some soon

    ReplyDelete