So often on my blog I post twists, variations, and "amped up" versions of classic dishes. But recently I've been getting requests for my favorite recipes for things like sandwich bread, pizza dough, chocolate chip cookies, etc. And while I do make these things quite often, for some reason I never feel compelled to post them. I've always assumed that everyone else has their own "go-to" recipes for these things, so would they really care to see mine? Well maybe not, but I've decided to share them with you anyway :-). So I've started a new series called "Back to Basics," in which I'll be highlighting my favorite recipes for.... the basics. Or what I consider to be basics for my kitchen in any case.
I realize that some people may think pimento cheese is a weird dish to start out highlighting for this series, but for me, it really is a basic recipe. I have made this countless times, and it is my go-to appetizer to serve when we have friends over, go to potlucks, or just to keep in the fridge for when the craving strikes. Oftentimes I've made a dish using pimento cheese, or highlighting it in a different way, so I thought I'd share my base recipe. For those of you unfamiliar with this southern delicacy, pimento cheese is simply extra sharp cheddar mixed with pimentos (or roasted red peppers), just enough mayonnaise to hold it together, and a few seasonings. It is most classically enjoyed on a sandwich or spread on crackers, but I've made it my life's mission to find as many other ways to serve it as well.
One of the many wonderful things about pimento cheese is that it's open to so many adaptations:
- make it extra spicy by using half pepperjack cheese, and a roasted poblano pepper instead of pimentos
- add crumbled bacon
- substitute some of the cheddar for goat cheese
- add some fresh herbs
- add a spoonful of horseradish for a kick
- add some chopped dill pickles or relish
- shred an apple and add that to the mix for a sweet-savory combo
Pimento Cheese, My Way
Pink Parsley Original
- 8oz. extra sharp cheddar, shredded
- 4 oz. diced pimientos
- 2 Tbs Greek yogurt
- 2 Tbs mayonnaise (light is fine)
- 1/4-1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1/8 tsp chili powder
- squeeze of lemon juice
- salt and pepper to taste
In a medium bowl, combine all the ingredients, and use a rubber spatula to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings to your preference. Before serving, refrigerate at least 1 hour to allow the flavors to meld.