Tag Archives: southern

Jalapeño Pimento Cheese

I grew up eating pimento cheese sandwiches (on white bread, no crust, cut into quarter triangles … naturally). They were a staple at every wedding my grandmother catered, and because I loved being her sous chef, I got to sample them—a lot.

It wasn’t until recently that I realized that pimento cheese is a distinctly Southern snack and that I’ve never actually made it. I don’t have my grandmother’s recipe (which I intend to get from my dad ASAP), so I looked up a half dozen recipes before trying out this concoction. The recipe I followed most closely was this one, which is based on my fav store-bought pimento cheese, Palmetto.

While I think it turned out delicious, I would probably cut back on the cream cheese just a bit next time because I thought it was just a tad overpowering, so that’s how I have written the recipe below. Also, the jalapeño can be increased or decreased depending on how much heat you like.

Jalapeño Pimento Cheese

6 oz low-fat cream cheese, softened to room temperature
2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
½ cup grated Monterey Jack cheese
1/3 cup low-fat mayonnaise
2 tbsp diced pimentos
1 roasted jalapeño, seeded and diced
1½ tbsp grated vidalia onion
¼ tsp black pepper
¼ tsp garlic powder
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, mixing well. Cover and refrigerate for a couple of hours before serving.

Grandma’s Corn Puddin’

I don’t know how old I was before I realized the word pudding ends with a “g” instead of an “n”—too old I’m sure. In my family, this is Grandma Parker’s Corn Puddin’, and if you put a “g” on the end, you will probably be called a Yankee (which will likely be followed by “bless your heart”).

My grandmother died when I was two, so I don’t have any memories of her. My mom made sure, however, that I would always know the comfort of her food. This recipe has been a staple at all of my family’s get togethers for as long as I can remember, and it’s one of my all-time favorite side dishes. I really hope you enjoy it!

Notes: I usually double the recipe if I’m taking this to a potluck or party; I just increase the cooking time by 15-20 minutes. The recipe as listed below is perfect for a regular family meal. Also, I usually use low fat or fat free evaporated milk without any issue.

Corn Puddin’

1 can cream corn
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup evaporated milk
¼ cup butter, melted
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup flour
½ tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla

Combine corn and eggs; stir in milk and butter. In a separate bowl, mix together the sugar, flour, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Add these dry ingredients to the corn mixture, along with the vanilla. Stir well to incorporate all the dry ingredients, and then pour into a 1.5 qt casserole dish. Bake at 350° for 30-45 minutes, until the top of the pudding has set (it will giggle like Jell-O if you shake it but there’s no liquid in the center).