Hot Baked Pimento Cheese Dip
This is decadence—pure, unadulterated, middle-American decadence. Just in case there’s not enough cheese in pimento cheese, some P-cheese recipes call for cream cheese. And, we all know cream cheese is the lodestar of hot cheesy dippy things.
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1 onion chopped
- 1 stalk celery chopped
- 1 clove garlic chopped
- 1 baguette
- 1 cup homemade or store-bought pimento cheese
- 4 ounces Neufchâtel or cream cheese room temperature
- 2 ounces grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese divided (½ cup)
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- Hot sauce to taste
- Kosher salt to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Paprika for finishing
- ►Heat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or a nonstick silicone baking sheet. Set aside.
- ►Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add onion and celery. Season with salt and pepper; cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are soft and translucent, 3 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 45 to 60 seconds. Transfer to a medium bowl and let cool.
- ►Hollow out baguette for cheese stuffing in the baguette. Place baguette on a clean work surface. Using a serrated knife, start slicing on an angle about 1-inch in from the outside of the baguette towards the center. Repeat down the other side. Cut each end and remove the strip of crust and crumb. Using your fingers, remove most of the crumb from the center. There should be a long channel down the center of the baguette. Set aside.
- ►Once vegetables have cooled, add pimento cheese, Neufchâtel, ½ of the grated cheese (¼ cup), parsley, and hot sauce. Stir to combine. Taste and adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper.
- ►Place hollowed baguette on the prepared baking sheet. Using a spoon or a small scoop, transfer cheese mixture to fill baguette, packing it in tightly. Sprinkle remaining grated cheese (¼ cup) and paprika over top. Transfer to oven and cook until cheese is melted and filling is piping hot, about 25 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board fitted with a serrated knife. Serve immediately.