The author and cook, Heather

Pimento Cheese

Poole's: Recipes and Stories from a Modern Diner

The pimento cheese recipe most southern cooks I know use includes jars of pre-pickled pimentos and pre-made mayonnaise. How does this one stack up?

This uses the basic cider mayo recipe I've already included on my channel (

You can find the full recipe included here:

Serving Size1/2 cup


[00:00]: [Music]
[00:05]: so the first recipe that I decided that
[00:07]: I was going to do for this channel was
[00:09]: the pimento cheese recipe from the
[00:13]: pool's diner cookbook it seems like it
[00:17]: would be relatively simple not a whole
[00:19]: lot of actual cooking no taking things
[00:22]: in and out of the stove of the oven when
[00:26]: you start to look at it you'll see there
[00:28]: is a beautiful picture and a long story
[00:31]: about it before you hit the actual
[00:33]: recipe and the recipe the ingredient
[00:38]: list is you know relatively short it's
[00:40]: over here and then there's a small bit
[00:43]: about the pimento cheese and how what
[00:45]: they do at the restaurant and then here
[00:47]: are the instructions so once you start
[00:51]: looking at it you see Oh first you have
[00:53]: to make another recipe in the book the
[00:55]: basic cider Mayo so that's that recipe
[00:57]: we've separated and you'll see before
[00:60]: this one and then there's also oh you
[01:04]: have to toast the peppercorns and not
[01:09]: called out in the ingredients the red
[01:13]: bell peppers that you buy you're
[01:15]: supposed to pickle them which I think we
[01:20]: forgot as you will soon see we neglected
[01:25]: to notice that so it's relatively easy
[01:26]: to just skip those things when you have
[01:32]: instructions that don't really have
[01:34]: bullet points or do this first and then
[01:36]: do this and then do that because time
[01:39]: wise really should probably roast the
[01:42]: peppers and pickle them first but it
[01:45]: would be nice to know that I've been
[01:47]: front up ahead of time for you know for
[01:50]: me because totally missed it but looking
[01:56]: forward to it okay so the pimento cheese
[01:59]: recipe in the pools diner cookbook is
[02:02]: one of two I think that call for this
[02:06]: toasted peppercorns and she says it's a
[02:10]: good flavor a very important flavor so
[02:13]: we're gonna go ahead and
[02:14]: some peppercorns she says high heat for
[02:17]: 90 seconds I have an induction stove
[02:20]: here so it actually heats up very very
[02:23]: quickly some Oh moved a little bit
[02:26]: I don't do high heat all that often on
[02:29]: here but just waiting for it to get hot
[02:33]: before I put the peppercorns in yeah
[02:40]: that's get more
[02:44]: and see I'm not touching it I'm just
[02:46]: hovering my hand about an inch or so
[02:48]: above it to feel how hot that is these
[02:52]: heat up very very quickly kind of like a
[02:54]: gas range and unlike see a little bit of
[03:00]: steam coming off there so now 90 seconds
[03:14]: there's definitely some amount of
[03:18]: volatile oils coming off of that and
[03:20]: eaten at my throat you can definitely
[03:22]: feel it so what we need to do after this
[03:31]: is grind them finely and then to make it
[03:38]: as fine as you can you actually oh these
[03:41]: are like popping you string that to make
[03:45]: it super fine
[03:51]: I've not done this ever before it's
[04:06]: about 60 seconds right now I don't want
[04:11]: to shortchange it so almost like a
[04:20]: peppercorn popcorn
[04:28]: turned it down to about medium high
[04:30]: because I felt like
[04:58]: I lost I can use a spatula that's what I
[05:05]: can do so now we just let these cool
[05:12]: before we grind them and move on to the
[05:20]: next step which will be blistering the
[05:23]: peppers so the next step in making the
[05:28]: pimento cheese from the Pula steiner
[05:30]: cookbook is to roast two red bell
[05:34]: peppers she does it on her gas range
[05:37]: just directly on the gas burners I don't
[05:41]: have a gas range could do it outside on
[05:43]: the grill if you have access to that but
[05:46]: I'm just gonna broil them so what I'm
[05:48]: gonna do is put them in the broiler and
[05:50]: then when they start getting charred on
[05:53]: one side turn them over or turn them
[05:54]: around until they're pretty much charred
[05:56]: everywhere I've got B on broil and the
[06:04]: highest setting highest rack I also like
[06:09]: to leave the door cracked open just a
[06:13]: bit so that it stays hotter I don't know
[06:18]: that it actually does anything but
[06:20]: that's what I did
[06:21]: plus it lets you hear and smell when
[06:25]: things start getting a little bit too
[06:26]: burned happens very very fast when
[06:32]: you're when you're boiling
[06:36]: takes a little while for it to start but
[06:40]: once it gets going it's pretty quick
[06:44]: let's see the tops have started to get
[06:47]: back and maybe not where I want them to
[06:49]: be in the end but we'll leave it like
[06:51]: that for now you'll see I've covered my
[06:59]: cookie sheet in foil my cleanup crew
[07:03]: really prefers that it's the starches
[07:09]: and sugars sort of cake on pretty easily
[07:13]: it's a tough cleanup so that helps
[07:27]: we're just gonna tie them to a side that
[07:30]: doesn't seem really keep doing this
[08:10]: just say you want to char the whole
[08:13]: surface so like we're on the right track
[08:34]: I think gonna call that good so now we
[08:49]: put them in a metal bowl cover it with
[08:56]: plastic wrap and let that sit for about
[09:03]: 15 minutes before we take the skin off
[09:10]: and the seeds and the stem and all that
[09:12]: off there we go
[09:16]: roasted peppers all right so we have our
[09:21]: roasted red peppers here in the bowl
[09:23]: they've been sitting for at least 15
[09:25]: minutes cooling off and getting all
[09:30]: ready to peel and so to put the skins on
[09:38]: I think she says to use tea towels a
[09:41]: dish towel to get the skin off so you
[09:46]: don't wash don't run it under water so
[09:48]: you don't wash away the flavor you're
[09:50]: still very hot if I need to I'm gonna
[09:53]: use paper towels just because sometimes
[09:55]: it's hard to get this crunchy black
[10:01]: stuff off of your tea towels although I
[10:03]: do have some older ones so I don't
[10:06]: really care so much about that we can
[10:08]: use if necessary really hot I think it's
[10:12]: been it's been sitting for like 30
[10:13]: minutes and it's still very hot so just
[10:16]: so you know it will take a while
[10:24]: so it's feeling pretty well I'm gonna
[10:33]: put it on the paper towels when I'm done
[10:40]: here hard part about this is that it's
[10:44]: all stuck to your fingers
[10:54]: so I've got most of the skin off now and
[10:59]: I'm going to just use the fact I use the
[11:07]: fact that this is soft to take out the
[11:17]: the seeds the stem and the seeds
[11:28]: get it a little bit cleaner what we're
[11:31]: gonna do when we're done with this is
[11:33]: cut them up and make it ready for the
[11:39]: pimento cheese so it needs to be in
[11:41]: small pieces
[11:48]: so that's good enough for now another
[11:55]: one here
[12:04]: you
[12:08]: all right so now I'm gonna clean up and
[12:12]: set up to chop this up okay so we have
[12:17]: this cutting board and I need to finely
[12:22]: dice these that is what I'm going to do
[12:30]: relatively small cutting board so I
[12:32]: probably can't do all of it at once but
[12:38]: [Music]
[12:48]: you
[12:48]: [Music]
[12:51]: a few seeds in there but I'm not going
[12:53]: to worry about that
[12:58]: that's one of the pepper stone it looks
[13:01]: like we'll be about right it says it
[13:02]: should be in the end about 3/4 of a cup
[13:08]: [Music]
[13:22]: you
[13:23]: [Music]
[13:27]: all right we have our chopped roasted
[13:33]: red peppers clean up a bit and get ready
[13:39]: for the rest so I need one tablespoon of
[13:48]: finely ground toasted peppercorns we
[13:53]: toasted these earlier and they've been
[13:55]: cooling for quite a while I'm gonna put
[13:56]: in maybe a tablespoon and a half into
[13:59]: this coffee grinder we do not use this
[14:04]: for coffee we only use this for spices
[14:06]: and it has been used in a while but it's
[14:09]: going to be loud
[14:25]: all right okay
[14:32]: and so she suggested that you strain
[14:36]: this pepper through a fine-mesh sieve I
[14:41]: have a really tiny one here gonna use
[14:52]: this still have a bunch of little pieces
[14:60]: left not small enough to go through here
[15:08]: but I assume that she just wants the the
[15:14]: really small one so let's make sure that
[15:16]: that's at least a tablespoon and yep we
[15:21]: have at least a tablespoon here so
[15:23]: that's done and I think now we have all
[15:27]: of our ingredients we can actually start
[15:29]: assembling okay we're finally ready to
[15:34]: assemble all of our ingredients for the
[15:37]: pimento cheese and I have my KitchenAid
[15:41]: blender under mixer food processor
[15:45]: that's what it is have my KitchenAid
[15:46]: food processor here fitted with a
[15:49]: [Music]
[15:51]: grating attachment it's supposed to be
[15:55]: finely grated I did not choose the
[15:58]: smallest one because I find that cheese
[15:59]: tends to just kind of clump together
[16:01]: when you create that small first I'm
[16:05]: gonna grate this onion I have about a
[16:07]: quarter of a red onion here I need two
[16:10]: tablespoons I'm just gonna grate it and
[16:13]: see exactly how much I end up with so
[16:18]: [Applause]
[16:37]: yeah it looks like tables game so I want
[16:40]: to use all of this so put the grading
[16:58]: attachment back on I have my cheese
[17:01]: already measured out and cut to a size
[17:06]: that I'm pretty sure will fit through
[17:08]: this hole which is an important step
[17:11]: it's a lot of cheese to grate not gonna
[17:13]: do that by hand you can obviously so
[17:21]: I've got a 3-year aged cheddar which was
[17:24]: a little bit difficult to find my local
[17:28]: grocery store that I do most of my
[17:30]: shopping at actually had some it was not
[17:32]: the brand that she says she uses she
[17:35]: uses hooks this is Black Creek I think I
[17:39]: took a picture will insert that here
[17:45]: and then the sharp white cheddar I found
[17:50]: some carry gold that was I think aged
[17:52]: for about a year
[17:58]: so that's what I'm using today so now
[18:01]: we're going to shred the cheese
[18:09]: [Applause]
[18:19]: [Applause]
[18:28]: [Applause]
[18:37]: [Applause]
[18:43]: all right going to dump this out I will
[18:52]: deal with you buildup of cheese that
[18:54]: happens every time I use the grater for
[18:57]: cheese I'm just gonna leave that build
[19:20]: up right now cuz with the white cheese
[19:23]: anyway so
[19:30]: [Applause]
[19:53]: so I think we'll just leave take them
[20:06]: out to nibble on later to assemble now
[20:25]: we have our cheese and only other thing
[20:32]: we have in here right now is the grated
[20:36]: onion so we have our grated onion and
[20:40]: our grated cheese in here and
[20:58]: okay already realized that we've done
[21:02]: something wrong we were supposed to
[21:06]: pickle these peppers so they are
[21:08]: supposed to sit in some cider vinegar
[21:13]: overnight or for at least three hours we
[21:20]: would like to eat these tonight
[21:22]: so we're gonna let them sit for about an
[21:25]: hour and then we'll be back to put
[21:29]: everything together I it does say we
[21:32]: need to mix all of this together to get
[21:37]: it you know the the white and the yellow
[21:40]: cheese mixed up the onion is supposed to
[21:43]: go in with other things but you know
[21:46]: it'll be fine it's supposed to go in
[21:48]: with the peppers and the Mayo in another
[21:53]: step but this will work fine just
[21:60]: further indication that you should read
[22:02]: and reread and reread your recipes and
[22:05]: plan out what you're going to do when
[22:07]: you do things like this where you're
[22:10]: making the pickled peppers from scratch
[22:12]: instead of buying a jar
[22:15]: all right so we'll pause for about an
[22:18]: hour here come right back okay we've
[22:27]: waited about an hour and now we're ready
[22:30]: to assemble mental cheese for real this
[22:34]: time
[22:37]: to measure the cider Mayo that we made
[22:40]: in another video I've got this plunger
[22:46]: tight measuring cup this will go up to
[22:49]: two cups so I need I think a cup of the
[22:51]: Mayo and this is perfect for it it's
[22:54]: really easy to get it all out I'm gonna
[22:57]: show you how I'm gonna measure that
[22:58]: right now but we're putting all of these
[23:01]: ingredients
[23:06]: now if you guys can see that the Mayo
[23:11]: that we made basically you pull it all
[23:25]: the way up to the top okay so we're
[23:45]: going to put the Mayo in here children
[23:55]: little concern anyway this is the
[23:58]: peppers with all of the vinegar that
[24:01]: they've been pickling in those right in
[24:04]: there and then some salt and a
[24:17]: tablespoon of this pepper that we made
[24:22]: and then some hot sauce we I generally
[24:29]: used Franks I find it's not too hot for
[24:32]: me I like things spicy but not too spicy
[24:36]: and after that after a certain point it
[24:40]: doesn't have a lot of flavor but Franks
[24:43]: is sort of perfect for what I like
[24:45]: Ashley Christensen says that she uses a
[24:49]: combination of Texas Pete and Tabasco so
[24:56]: there we go
[24:57]: that's everything for this we're gonna
[25:00]: get this all mixed up and so there's the
[25:06]: whose sauce for our pimento cheese and
[25:13]: then we just mix that in the onions are
[25:16]: supposed to be in here but I put them in
[25:18]: this bowl before so they're in with the
[25:23]: cheese that's been all mixed up and just
[25:27]: mix it all up probably hard to mix up
[25:56]: next up there
[26:05]: that was very peppery and tasted a
[26:07]: little bit of that sauce and it
[26:11]: definitely has quite a strong black
[26:14]: pepper flavor so she says to let this
[26:21]: sit in the refrigerator for a while to
[26:24]: you know be cold and thick and you meld
[26:27]: together we are probably not going to
[26:30]: let it sit for that long because we
[26:32]: would like to gonna put it on burgers
[26:36]: tonight which we're going to eat here
[26:39]: relatively soon but everything else has
[26:44]: been cold and it's all been sitting
[26:45]: together sitting separately cold so it's
[26:48]: probably fine but there will be plenty
[26:51]: left over this makes a very large batch
[26:56]: as you can see so I'm glad we have some
[27:01]: friends coming over there they can help
[27:04]: us eat it she suggests serving this on
[27:09]: crostini
[27:10]: usually at the restaurant they serve it
[27:12]: on thinly sliced toasted pieces of
[27:14]: baguette we'll probably have it like I
[27:18]: said on burgers and also probably on
[27:21]: crackers later and I'll let you know how
[27:24]: it turns out that's it
[27:27]: altogether
[27:31]: so we made with Mentos cheese and we had
[27:35]: it with our friends they came over we
[27:38]: put it on burgers we've had it in the
[27:40]: evening on crackers I made some some
[27:44]: crostini just like they serve it in the
[27:45]: restaurant too to have it for for one
[27:48]: evening I think we have a picture of
[27:50]: that so we've had it several times we
[27:53]: still have some leftover at this point
[27:56]: that we're going to take with us to
[27:59]: dinner with some more friends tomorrow
[28:01]: and so that's good made an awful lot of
[28:05]: pimento cheese so it's the recipe says
[28:10]: it makes six and a half cups enough for
[28:12]: eighteen sandwiches it makes a lot of
[28:15]: pimento cheese the recipe was a little
[28:19]: more involved then I generally would
[28:23]: have expected but that includes making
[28:26]: your own mayo which actually is really
[28:28]: really simple and if you know if you
[28:31]: have the time make your own mayo I've
[28:35]: done it before it's it's really not bad
[28:37]: and it gives you a different flavor
[28:38]: profile than any mayo you can buy in the
[28:40]: store still it's just an easy finding
[28:44]: the cheese was kind of difficult I went
[28:49]: to the Whole Foods nearby I went to the
[28:53]: Fresh Market neither of those actually
[28:57]: had any three-year aged cheddar but I
[29:01]: did find some at my local grocery store
[29:04]: we happen to go to a different grocery
[29:07]: store today and we're just curious to
[29:09]: see if they had any three-year aged
[29:11]: cheddar and I think the most aged
[29:15]: cheddar they had was two years and that
[29:17]: was the same brand that I bought for
[29:20]: this recipe the Black Creek so finding a
[29:24]: three-year aged cheddar might be
[29:25]: difficult but does it make a huge
[29:29]: difference probably not
[29:32]: so use a cheddar you like if you want to
[29:36]: make it more simple use a cheddar you
[29:37]: like that you can find easily remember
[29:43]: to pickle the peppers
[29:44]: or use pre pickled peppers use Mao
[29:48]: that's already charred if that's
[29:50]: something that you don't feel
[29:52]: comfortable making and it'll be
[29:54]: delicious the toasted black pepper
[29:57]: it is very pepper forward the flavor in
[30:02]: this Mentos cheese there's a lot of
[30:04]: pepper in it especially later after you
[30:08]: do let it sit for it says I think it
[30:12]: says to let it sit at least an hour
[30:15]: before serving we didn't do that the
[30:16]: first day but we we could tell that the
[30:19]: flavor was different the second day it
[30:23]: was delicious it was a little a little
[30:27]: more difficult than I would expect for
[30:28]: something like this but definitely ways
[30:31]: to make it a little bit easier so enjoy
[30:36]: [Music]