As a Southerner, I can attest that the debate over the correct way to make pimento cheese is a fierce one. It seems like everyone’s grandmother had a different way of crafting this “caviar of the South,” and I never attended a family gathering while growing up that didn’t feature some version of it. The trinity of cheddar cheese, mayonnaise, and diced pimentos has many variations — for instance, some people add pickle juice, for a little extra brininess, or onions, for some extra bite.
Regardless of how you make it, over at The Kitchn, one writer makes an argument for pimento cheese as a pantry staple, and I have to agree. Though my favorite way to eat this heavenly spread is on a Ritz cracker or simply with a spoon, pimento cheese is a versatile food that can fill a lot of different purposes in any meal of the day. Here are some of our favorite ideas at culture:
Pimento Cheese at Breakfast
Cheese and peppers are pretty common ingredients in omelettes, but try swapping them out for a scoop of pimento cheese to start your day on cheesy note.
Pimento Cheese on Sandwiches
One of my favorite lunches here in the Boston area is from a place called Cutty’s, which makes a crusty baguette sandwich with ham, sweet pickles, and pimento cheese. Tell me that doesn’t make your mouth water. This sandwich can easily be recreated at home, even swapping out different deli meats. Or how about a BLT with pimento cheese instead of mayo?
Grilled Pimento Cheese
Melting this cheesy concoction is a surefire way to make it even more delicious. You can simply spread it between two slices of bread to grill (check out these tips for making a perfect grilled cheese) or use this recipe from Food52, which adds tomatoes and bacon.
Pimento Cheese Pizza
This recipe for Pimento Cheese and Bacon Pizza from Buns in My Oven switches out the traditional mozzarella in exchange for pimento cheese spread. “That salty crunch from the bacon seriously just rocks pimento cheese’s world,” says blogger Karly.
Pimento Cheese Burgers
Really the only question you should be asking when considering adding pimento cheese to your burgers is if it should go on top, instead of a slice of cheese, or inside of the burger, as a filling, like in this recipe from Williams-Sonoma.
These are another staple at Southern gatherings, so why not combine them with pimento cheese? Instead of making the standard yolk and mustard filling for your next picnic, dollop some pimento cheese in the hardboiled whites and sprinkle some paprika on top.
With this arsenal of recipes, you will have plenty of excuses to eat pimento cheese at every meal of the day!
Photo credit: Image courtesy of Cook Au Vin