Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Jalapeno Pimento Cheese

jalapeno pimento cheese

Y'all, I have a true affinity for Cheese. White cheese, yellow cheese, Pepper-Jack cheese.... Shredded cheese, Cubed cheese, Nacho cheese... you name it! Anything with the word cheese in it is always at the top of my list!

When we first moved to the GBC I had been told by several women from my women's group to try a local "eatery"/ "tea room"/ "deli", but I had to catch them while they're open. The quaint restaurant/shop is only open a couple of days out of the week AND just for a few hours each day (mostly just open for lunch). The tea room has a strictly limited, but very delicious menu. Fine by me. I  truly think places that have a smaller menu means everything on the menu is their "specialty".

One day I was able to make it into the tea room a couple of hours before they closed for the day. And as I sipped on some fruit infused tea I browsed the menu options. One of the items listed on the menu was their Jalapeno Pimento Cheese and Bacon sandwich. Think of a BLT but without the L or the T and replace those with spicy Pimento Cheese. Say whaaaaaaat?! Where has this been my whole life?! Bacon + Cheese in between some sandwich bread, and I'm all in.

One bite and I was sold. As soon as I took that first bite I knew I would want to come back for more.. and more.. and more, but I was super limited with their hours of operation. Total bummer.

So, being the problem solver I am, into the kitchen I went for a little recipe development...so to say.

I kept telling B about this wondrous Bacon and Jalapeno Pimento Cheese sandwich, and I assured him it was the best thing that has ever happened to me! Well, besides him, of course! And my kittens. And, my puppies. But you get the idea. This sandwich freaking rocked my world, and my mouth off! I kept telling him: "Babe, you HAVE to try this sandwich"... "You don't know true love until you've tried this sandwich"... "Come on Babe! Don't you want this sandwich too!?"

With little response... I took it as a "yes, honey please make me this amazing sandwich you speak of"

So, since I'm SO happy to please, I knew first things first! I had to create the Perfect Jalapeno Pimento Cheese - I had the bacon part down, and after all, it's the Pimento Cheese that makes this sandwich so spectacular.

jalapeno pimento cheese

Once, I made it, I knew I could use it in various areas of my life. 
For example, I took as a dip to a party I recently hosted. (#perfectpartydip)
I also just ate it in spoonfuls (#noshame)
And, then, y'all.. then, I made the sandwich. (see below)

So there are a couple of things that really make this pimento cheese so great. 
First, you must make it with freshly GREATed cheese. (see what I did there?) Takes a couple of minutes to grate your own, but makes all the difference. 
I used a medium block of sharp Cheddar cheese (approx. 2 cups shredded cheese)

grated cheese

Also, be sure to use fresh, seeded jalapenos.
Use 2 small, or 1 large jalapeno(s), finely chopped.

You'll also need some mayonnaise, cream cheese, and, well, Pimentos!

Once you mix all the ingredients together be sure to place in the fridge for half and hour or so to chill.


Then, to compile your B+JPC sandwich:
use toasted wheat bread
slather on the Jalapeno Pimento Cheese (JPC)
 then top with cooked (crispy) bacon (B)

pimento cheese and bacon

pimento cheese and bacon

pimento cheese and bacon

Then, eat eat eat! 
Enjoy!
 Then tell the world how Jalapeno Pimento Cheese has changed your life for the better. 

And, if you're looking for something a little lighter, you can also stuff this Jalapeno Pimento Cheese in Celery Sticks like I did here.



Jalapeno Pimento Cheese

jalapeno pimento cheese
by: Amanda Hicks (recipe adapted from allrecipes.com)
Makes 3 cups

Ingredients
  • 2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 large jalapeno pepper (or 2 small), seeded and finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 (4 ounce) jar diced pimento, drained
  • garlic salt and black pepper to taste
Instructions
  • Using a rubber spatula combine all ingredients into a large bowl, until mixed well. Cover and place in the refrigerator for 1/2 hour to chill. Serve cold


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