RECIPE #397, DAY #571
ORIGINAL RECIPE: “Pimiento Cheese,” from Ree Drummond in Food Network Magazine, circa 2013*
TIMING: 15 minutes
TOOLS: A stand mixer is ideal here
COOK TYPE: None
HEALTH: Pimiento cheese–a Southern staple–has its health issues. It is simply bursting with fat from mayonnaise, cheese, and more cheese. Slather it on a cheap light white bread and you have no redemption, either. The only way you could even begin to recover here is by using it as a dip for raw veggies or melt it on a toast and float it in a vegetable soup (like roasted red pepper). Whole grain crackers. Any of which you could.
EXPERIENCE: I have a recipe for pimiento cheese, but I have never been totally satisfied with it. Plus, I just love pimiento cheese. So when I saw this article for 3 different versions of it, I ear-marked it for the future. As my dad says, the future is here.
I started with Ree Drummond’s version, but on sampling it and then scrutinizing all 3 recipes, I realized that they were sort of crossed. (Obviously, they didn’t think so, but I did.) Plus, if you are going to mess with pimiento cheese, you might as well go all the way. Really Eastern-European it up. Or spice it up. Or whatever.
In the end, I decided to make this 1 pimiento cheese into 2 distinct recipes. One to accent the Eastern European flair and the other the adobo sauce.
NOTES: To make a traditional pimiento cheese with wonderful texture, just use the first recipe and omit the paprika, carraway seed, eggs, and dill.
- In a stand mixer, combine 4 ounces softened cream cheese, 1/2 cup mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, 1 teaspoon paprika, 1/2 teaspoon caraway seed, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Use the whisk attachment to whip it together.
- Add 8 ounces shredded Monterrey Jack and 8 ounces shredded sharp cheddar. Whip just for a moment until combined. Add 4 diced hard-boiled eggs, 4 ounces drained pimientos and 2 tablespoons minced dill. Whip again just until combined.
- Serve on bread (rye?) or with crackers, or try this one baked into a twice-baked potato.
- In a stand mixer, combine 4 ounces softened cream cheese, 1/2 cup mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, 1 tablespoon adobo sauce, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Use the whisk attachment to whip it together.
- Add 8 ounces shredded Pepper Jack and 8 ounces shredded sharp cheddar. Whip just for a moment until combined. Add 4 ounces drained pimientos. Whip again just until combined.
- Serve on toasted bread with slices of crispy bacon on 1 side and lime-pickled red onions on the other.
Serve slathered between two slices of white bread, with sweet tea and either red bell pepper soup or Spicy Road Mix.
LEFTOVER IDEAS: Keep this in the fridge and just keep eating until its gone. Make sandwiches (including grilled cheese), use it as a spread or dip for crackers and veggies, and even bake it over things.
*Recipe changed from the original.