homemade cheese spreads for the first time - a basic Cheddar Cheese Spread and then a fantastic nutty cheese spread that was inspired by French Onion soup and the store bought Swiss Almond spreads - my Swiss-Almond Cheese Spread with Caramelized Onions. We ate the hell out of them.
This year, I was thinking about a southern classic, Pimiento Cheese Spread... but traditionally, the spread is simply made with cheese, mayo and pimientos. I really like using cream cheese because I wanted it more like a cracker dip than a sandwich spread. I also wanted to boost it up a little with flavour, so I added a lot more than what the traditional spread has - garlic, Worcestershire, jalapeño, wine, etc. It's not hot or spicy at all... so even if you shy away from jalapeños, I say add 'em to this recipe. It just adds a little depth to the spread - more layers of flavour.
So if you're trying to come up with some appetizers to make and/or take to a New Year's party, this is a pretty easy and great one!
I think the Descendents said what we were all thinking. -jen
PIMIENTO CHEESE SPREAD
Time: 5 minutes
Makes: about 5 cups
Need: Food Processor
- 8oz cream cheese, softened
- 16oz (1 pound) shredded cheese*
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 4oz jar diced pimientos, drained
- 2 tablespoons pickled jalapeños, diced (optional)
- 2 teaspoons garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon dry white wine (optional)
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
Combine all ingredients in food processor and blend until smooth and combined. Refrigerate (but I always have to eat some immediately. The flavours marry nicely if you give it a little time to refrigerate though.)
Serve with crackers or raw veggies, make a grilled cheese with some spread inside, use as a sandwich spread - eat it how you want! It'd probably be good mixed in with some pasta (though I've not tried that!)