I hated pimento cheese when I was a kid - it seemed wet, soggy, slightly sweet and overtly rich. A horrible sandwich option found in gas stations, supermarkets, and vending machines, to be avoided at all costs - my God, I thought, who the fuck wants to eat a sandwich with a filling that is softer than the bread? And the kids in school that packed pimento cheese sandwiches for lunch weren’t to be trusted.- not at all different from the “dirty kids” down the street that mother instructed, ordered me to stay away from. A kid that eats pimento cheese, after all, probably had bad hygiene and orange teeth - gross.
Outside of sack lunches at school, the only other time I was forced to deal with pimento cheese was during the holidays when it was smeared inside the green valley of fresh celery and carefully nestled on a glass tray, between canned black olives (that were wonderful when eaten from finger tips), sweet baby pickles, and more celery stuffed with creamy peanut butter. Nobody but my grandfather ate the pimento cheese - and let’s face it, he liked scotch and whiskey….two things equally as off putting as slimy orange cheese spread.
As I got older, I mysteriously developed a deep affinity for scotch, whiskey…and yes, even pimento cheese. It’s become quite expected in the south for chefs, restaurants to serve this simple cheese spread that is delicious on white bread alone, as accouterments to burgers and sandwiches, and even as a means for simple snacking, entertaining. Please enjoy my recipe here - I like it with baked lahvosh (recipe to come soon) and pickled cucumbers and red onions (also to come soon) - I hope you enjoy it. Oh, and to all the pimento eating, dirty kids I shunned or shamed in elementary school - I humbly ask for your forgiveness - I was wrong….
Pick a Pepper Cheese
1 lb. of sharp cheddar
Splash of Pickapeppa brown hot sauce
Splash of cider vinegar
1 cup grilled sweet peppers, rough chopped
2 Tsp. onion powder
1 Tbsp. garlic powder
1 Tbsp. samball hot sauce
21 Tsp. Dijon mustard
1 Cup mayonnaise (Start with ½ cup and add as needed)
Pinch of smoked paprika
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Allow to rest in fridge for an hour or so.Serve with home made lahvosh and pickled cucumbers and red onions.