Goat Cheese and Gouda Pimento/Pimiento Cheese

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Pimiento or Pimento? They are both equally accepted.  The former is the original Spanish term for mild cherry peppers.  The latter is just how the term evolved.  Is the latter a Southern term?  I don't know.  I do know that when I say it, it sounds like PUH-MEN-UH and I do spell it as pimento . However you spell it or say it, it is a delicious little pepper that adds flavor and color to a dish or a stuffed Manzanilla olive.  Speaking of stuffed olives...

Quick story... Someone close to me (I will not name the person) with a very high IQ once asked, "So do they just take the pimentos out of the olives and put them in jars?" OMG you should have seen the expression on my face!! I just about died from laughter and disbelief. It was truly a "you've got to be kidding me" moment!!!šŸ˜‚

Ok, back to the cheese.  How many variations of the classic pimento cheese are there? I have no clue, but I bet one could write a book just about pimento cheese (Wait, I just looked. There is one!).  Some refer to it as the peanut butter of the South, but I like to think of it as the flavored butter of the South.  You can do almost anything to or with a basic recipe.  Add jalapeƱos, bacon, horseradish, buffalo sauce, onion, olive spread, chipotle sauce, etc...and/or change up the cheeses, like in this recipe.  Once again, the possibilities are endless!  Having said that, there is one thing that must remain in any recipe, a good amount of quality  Cheddar cheese and mayonnaise (NOT the salad dressing stuff).  The other thing that is an absolute must is the technique.  What ever cheese you are using, grate or crumble it yourself.  Step away from the bags of the pre-shredded stuff.  There are stabilizers in there and they lend an off-putting taste to the end result.  Another important tip is to let the cheese mixture set-up in the refrigerator for a couple of hours, especially if you are using add-ins or using different cheeses.  This allows the flavors to develop.

In this particular recipe, the original called for adding pecans to the mixture, but I really like the side addition/option of the candied pecans.   If you choose to "go-nuts", you get that whole sweet, savory, creamy and crunchy thing all-in-one bite.  If you choose to stay in the nut-free zone, you still get a delicious mouthful of flavor.  Along with the pecans,  I like to serve this pimento cheese recipe with Blue Diamond Artisan Crackers; either flax seed or multi-seed.

Goat Cheese and Gouda Pimento/Pimiento Cheese
makes 4 cups

8-ounces sharp white Cheddar cheese, finely shredded
4-ounces Gouda cheese, finely shredded
4-ounces goat cheese, crumbled and at room temperature
1 (4-ounce) jar diced pimientos
1 1/2 cups mayonnaise
1 teaspoon hot sauce (Tabasco), or to taste (optional)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Serve with-
Crackers (I like Blue Diamond Artisan Crackers-flax seed or multi-seed)

In a large bowl, combine the cheeses.  Add the pimientos, mayonnaise and hot sauce. Stir mixture until well combined.  Season to taste with Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight, for the flavors to blend.  Bring to room temperature before serving.  Serve with crackers and candied pecans.  Cheese mixture can be stored, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Enjoy!

Source: Adapted from southernliving.com


  1. I'll be trying this recipe :) But mostly, I wanted to say that I'm SO GLAD you're back! I started doing Sunday dinners years ago after reading your blog. My oldest son absolutely loved it. I don't remember the menus, but I tried to have an appetizer, a fancy drink, and a nice dinner on Sundays for awhile. It's a great family memory, and one that especially makes me think of my oldest. He's now a freshman in college (across the state), and those memories are so precious to me now.

    I'm bringing back Sunday dinners, and while the whole family appreciates them, my youngest son is the one who gets the most excited about them. Something about the boys in my family - they really feel the love expressed in food! :)

    You've inspired me to love my family in a way they can really feel it. Thank you!

  2. Laura,
    This comment warmed my heart! šŸ„°I am so glad that I have inspired your culinary and family traditions.


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