Thursday, July 06, 2006

pimento cheese

One of the things I loved about living in Texas (not a terribly long list) was being able to walk into the grocery store and buy a container of Price's Pimento Cheese. Yes, I do know pimento cheese is not limited to Texas and yes, I do know homemade is better than store bought, yet I'm also happy to stand by my opening sentence.

Moving to New England meant moving away from Price's. Last week in Mississippi, I said something about pimento cheese and Ella, the cook at the church, said, "Baby, I'm makin' that for the Bible School picnic on Friday."

I ate three sandwiches and came home determined to learn how to make it myself. After much research, here is the recipe:

4 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
2 4 oz jars of pimentos, drained and diced (juice reserved)
black pepper (so you can see the specks)
Tabasco to taste
1/4 t sugar
1 T bourbon
mayonnaise (start with 1/4 c; add until it has the texture you want)
This is one of those recipes that goes by feel more than measurement. I used the paddle blade in my Kitchen Aid to mix it. Start with the cheese, add the pimento juice, the pimentos, the pepper, Tabasco, sugar, and then add the mayo gradually until it looks like you want it to look.

Then wash your hands and make a sandwich.



Satchel Pooch said...

I'm so excited to find this -- thank you! I *just* discovered pimento cheese (I don't think it's common in the Pacific Northwest) and I'm hooked, so this is a big win. Thanks!

T. Craig said...

Interesting recipe. Pimento cheese is one of my all time favorite sandwiches, when made properly. Of course, to each his own taste. Personally, I like using Miracle Whip instead of mayonnaise. However, since you added sugar to your recipe that uses mayonnaise, I suspect it gives the final taste the same effect. Never have tried Tobasco or bourbon as part of my recipe but I do like adding garlic salt along with generous amounts of pepper. Also, I’ve always used Longhorn or Colby cheese and, if desired to reduce the fat content, add cottage cheese (but not too much). Finally, any bread works but I like white bread the best, untoasted.

Mom always made a batch of pimento cheese sandwiches for our vacation trips by car. She would buy a loaf of white bread and make sandwiches out of the whole loaf and then place them in the plastic bag that the loaf of bread came in. When we got hungry, all we had to do was ask for a sandwich.

One final comment: I’ve grown fond of adding Fritos to my sandwich and if there’s no more bread available, I simply use the pimento cheese as a dip with just about anything handy - crackers, chips, etc.