Just Life

pimento cheese.

pimento cheese

…I’ve talked a lot about it, but apparently not here. except for one very tangential reference a few mondays ago. but now I’m ready to tell it all!

over memorial day weekend, I participated in a four-(wo)man throwdown. battle pimento cheese [apologies to sara for mixing my food network metaphors :-)] my mom, sister and I hatched the contest idea back in april, in beaufort, the night I had that delicious pimento-cheese filled biscuit. my mom shared that my dad is a huge fan of pimento cheese (who knew?!) and we agreed it would be fun to try a savory recipe after last year’s sweet one.

I had hoped to make my grandmother’s recipe, but turns out hers was the kind of recipe that wasn’t written down. so we all started from scratch. for me, that meant something (sort of – I mean, it is cheese!) healthy. hopefully without mayonnaise.

my knitting friends helped a lot – that’s where I found out about using cottage cheese (thanks kathy and helen!) and hot sauce (thanks liza!). and of course sara sent a few links – one in particular used greek yogurt and suggested grated apple. I took it from there…of course with my dad as the judge, everyone was a winner that weekend.

and today, after making it for the second time – and still thinking it’s delicious, I’m proud to share my own recipe. it’s creamy. it’s savory, with just a hint of sweet. and really good with celery (my sister showed me this and it’s now my favorite way to eat pimento cheese!)

208:365 pimento cheese.

pimento cheese
makes about 1 cup

3 tablespoons greek yogurt (I use non-fat)
3 tablespoons cottage cheese (I use non-fat)
1/2 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon lemon juice
3-4 dashes of tabasco (I didn’t use this for the throwdown version, but do think it adds a nice zing)
1 garlic clove, minced
1 roasted red pepper (pimento is fine :-), coarsely chopped (about 1/4 cup)
1/2# white cheddar cheese, the sharper the better, coarsely grated (I use my box grater)
3/4 of a medium apple, peeled and coarsely grated (about 2/3 cup)
salt and pepper to taste – I didn’t add any the second time… the cheese seemed to be salty enough and the tabasco was pepper-y enough

blend the yogurt and cottage cheese so there aren’t noticeable lumps. I think is really an optional step, depending on how you feel about cottage cheese. add the worcestershire, lemon juice, tabasco, garlic and chopped pepper. stir to blend. fold in the grated cheese and apple. chill a few hours before serving. it hasn’t lasted more than a day, but I imagine it would keep fine for a few days.

pimento cheese