You're gonna want to spread this Southwest Pimento Cheese on everything from crackers, to veggies, to sandwiches. It' so good and easy to make!
I'm not from the south, but if I were, I think I'd have a thing for pimento cheese. It just seems like it's so packed with flavor, and it would go on everything. Kind of one of those Swiss army foods that makes a great appetizer, sandwich spread, smeared on a warm loaf of bread, or even spooned into scrambled eggs.
I finally got around to making my first pimento cheese the other day. Except, since I live in the southwest, you know I had to swap out the green olives and pimentos, and use some jalapeño, cumin and red peppers instead. Here's how it came to be...
This month's Recipe Redux theme celebrates cookbooks. We were asked to pick a cookbook and " revamp a recipe to be your own healthy version. Pick from a page with any combination of the following numbers: 2-0-1-8. Then bid farewell to 2018!" I have a lot of cookbooks, so that sounded easy enough.
Except it wasn't! I have a house full of company and it's a few days before Christmas, so all they want is the traditional home cooked meals I made when they were young. And Christmas food.
I must have looked through 40 cookbooks. Page 18, 20, 180, 210, 218... you name the number combo. I found many good recipe, if it was just me I was cooking for, but nothing seemed quite right for the family.
So just when I was literally going to pass on this month's theme, I remembered my recipe clipping file. And there, at the number 18 spot, was this appetizer recipe I clipped from Phoenix Home and Garden Magazine a few years ago. It was titled Roasted Pepper Cheese Spread, but I'm calling it Southwest Pimento Cheese Spread to make it my own. I also made a few minor tweaks to make it just a bit healthier, and let me tell you - this stuff is GOOD! Like eat it with a spoon good. It's also a total hit with the family and I suspect that we'll be making another batch for our Christmas platter.
It's perfect for spreading on crackers or even tortilla chips, but it also makes a great vegetable spread. And I'm pretty sure it's gonna kick up our turkey sandwiches a few notches.
If you want to eat this with chunks of hearty bread instead of vegetables, feel free to put it into a small ovenproof baking dish and heat it in the oven or microwave. I actually can't decide if I prefer it warm or cold...
Southwest Pimento Cheese Spread
- ¼ cup kefir cheese, labneh, or Greek cream cheese at room temperature
- ½ cup plain Greek yogurt any type
- 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese grated
- 1 cup Monterey Jack cheese grated
- 1 small jalapeno pepper more or less to taste
- 2 green onions, thinly sliced
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- 4 ounce jar roasted red peppers, drained, patted dry and chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- Combine the kefir, labneh or Greek cream cheese and the Greek yogurt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix together on low speed until smooth.
- Add the cheeses, chopped jalapeño, green onions, garlic powder, cumin and chili powder. Continue to mix until everything is combined.
- Remove from the mixer, and stir in the roasted red pepper by hand. Taste and add salt and pepper as desired.
- Chill at least 30 minutes before serving. Serve cold with vegetables and crackers, or put this spread into an ovenproof baking dish and heat it in the microwave for about 2 minutes, and serve it warm or hot with chunks of bread.
Make sure you stop by and see what the other Recipe ReDux members found in their favorite cookbooks (or their recipe clippings) from 2-0-1-8.