A highly regarded comfort food throughout the American South, pimento cheese is a red-flecked, orange-colored spread made from cheese, typically sharp cheddar; diced pimentos; mayonnaise; and seasonings. Recipes vary widely, and texture can range from chunky to smooth.
- 10 ounces extra-sharp cheddar (McKenna suggests Kraft Cracker Barrel Natural Extra Sharp Cheddar Cheese)
- 2 4-ounce jars diced pimentos, drained
- 1 fresh jalapeno, seeds removed, minced
- 1 teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon sugar
- About 1-1/2 cups high-quality mayonnaise
- (McKenna prefers Southern-style Duke’s Mayonnaise, available by mail order or locally at Cost Plus World Market stores)
- 1 baguette
- Olive oil
Prepare the cheese: Let the cheese come to room temperature. Grate the cheese into a bowl and mix to combine with the remaining pimento cheese ingredients. Refrigerate for 8 hours to let the flavors meld.
Make the crostini: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Thinly slice the baguette and rub both sides of each slice with olive oil. Lay on a baking sheet and bake for 5 to 7 minutes, until browned and crisp.