I was so happy to read Sylvia Carter’s recent article in Newsday about Pimiento Cheese. Ms. Carter, a fellow Hamlet Organic Garden member, discusses her childhood growing up down south and how pimiento cheese is pretty unfamiliar to us Northerners.
I must admit that it wasn’t until about a year ago that I had learned about pimiento cheese and that was from an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives with Guy Fieri on the Food Network. Guy had traveled down to North Carolina to The Penguin where owner Greg Auten showed him how to make a really great Pimiento Cheese spread. Ever since watching the episode I have had a hankerin for some pimiento cheese. So, when Stefani and I picked up a new food processor the other day, pimiento cheese was the first thing on my list to make.
I searched the web for pimiento cheese recipes and stumbled upon a recipe attributed to The Penguin, so I figured that would be a great starting point.
Now, I made mine with Monterey Jack cheese and not Pepper Jack, but that’s only because Pepper Jack wasn’t available at the time (I’d probably use Pepper Jack next time although one wouldn’t have missed it had they only tried the Monterey). Also, instead of the green chile sauce, I used Frank’s Red Hot. Ultimately, in the end, I was very happy with my pimiento cheese and wait till you hear what I did with it.
1 pound grated Cheddar
1/2 pound grated Monterey Jack
1 (4-ounce) can diced pimentos
1/3 teaspoon granulated garlic
1/3 teaspoons granulated onion
About 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
About 1/2 tablespoon Frank’s Red Hot
2/3 cup organic mayonnaise
In a food processor, combine ingredients well and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Now, as a quick snack, I like to take a piece of pancetta and fry that up in a nonstick pan. I put the crispy pancetta onto a sandwich of whitebread and pimiento cheese and then fry that sandwich up in the pancetta fat in the nonstick pan, making a Pimiento and Pancetta Grilled Cheese Sandwich. Or even better, as I recently discovered, slather some ‘memto cheese onto a burger to make a Pimiento Cheeseburger (easy for us as we keep Coleman Organic burgers in the freezer).