Pimento cheese is a common food preparation in the Southern United States, a spread or relish made with cheese. The basic recipe has few ingredients: sharp cheddar cheese or processed cheese (such as Velveeta or American cheese), mayonnaise, pimentos (also spelled "pimientos"), salt and pepper, blended to either a smooth or chunky paste. Regional ingredients include cream cheese, Louisiana-style hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, cayenne pepper, paprika, jalapeños, onions, garlic, and dill pickles.
Pimento cheese can be served as a spread on crackers or celery, scooped onto corn chips or tortilla chips, mixed in with mashed yolks for deviled eggs, added to grits, or slathered over hamburgers or hotdogs. Pimento cheese can also be used to replace the sliced cheese in a grilled cheese sandwich.
A pimento cheese sandwich may be a quick and inexpensive lunch for children, or it may be served as a cocktail finger food (with crusts trimmed, garnished with watercress, and cut into triangles) or rolled up and cut into pinwheels. Pimento cheese sandwiches are a signature item at The Masters Tournament. Minor controversy ensued in 2013 when the Augusta National Golf Club switched food suppliers for the Masters but were unable to duplicate the recipe used by the previous supplier, resulting in a sandwich with a markedly different taste. It is also a common snack in the Philippines, where it is referred to as cheese pimiento.
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- "Pimento Cheese: It's A Southern Thing". NPR, Wright Bryan, January 17, 2007.
- Pimiento Cheese: One of Life's Simple Pleasures
- NPR: Pimento Cheese: It's a Southern Thing
- "Perfecting pimento: gourmet gives us our own recipe". Golf Digest. 2003.
- Augusta Georgia: Features:Pimento cheese is soul food of the South 04/14/02
- Thompson, Wright (April 11, 2013). "A sandwich stumper at the Masters". ESPN.com. Retrieved April 13, 2013.
- Homemade Cheese Pimiento in a Philippine online recipe database