- THE RECIPE
- • Cheddar cheese, grated, about ½ a food processor full
- • 1 small jar whole pimentos
- • dash onion powder
- • dash red pepper
- • dash Worcestershire sauce
- • pinch sugar (less than ¼ tsp)
- • Homemade mayonnaise
- Makes about 1 cup of mayonnaise, we usually double it to have enough to also spread on the bread.
- • 1 egg
- • 1 cup oil (add ¼ in the beginning, reserve ¾ cup)
- • ½ tsp dry mustard
- • dash cayenne
- • ½ tsp salt
- • 1 Tablespoon Lemon juice
- • onion powder to taste
- Place all ingredients in food processor (or blender), reserving ¾ cup oil. Add remaining oil slowly while processing. (We use the metal blade on the processor.) As I have said, my processor is old, but the tool to push food in the processor has a tiny hole to allow air in. (I don't know if they all do.) My sister-in-law, Libby Griffin discovered this trick while learning to make Lella's mayonnaise. If you put the pusher in the opening and pour your oil in the pusher--it allows a tiny constant stream of oil to be added to the mayonnaise while you are processing. Using this method, we never have the mayonnaise separate.
- Please understand, Lella was an old-timey cook. She didn't often use measurements (usually the only time was when she was baking) so that is why the recipe reads as it does. If you consider it I will try to work on some measurements if you deem them necessary.
- Blend grated cheese and pimento in food processor until well blended. Add mayonnaise as needed, blend again, add other ingredients, blend. (The pimento cheese is a solid color and you cannot see the pimentos once blended.)
(If absolutely necessary, if I am taking the sandwiches to an event, not family I will substitute Hellman’s—but never for family, they would not forgive me!—Also there is currently a problem getting Pepperidge Farms bread in Oxford.)
In 2003, the Southern Foodways Alliance held a Pimento Cheese Invitational, and this is the recipe that topped the other 300 entrants, courtesy of Oxford’s Nan Davis’ Aunt Lella. Pimento cheese with homemade mayo is the bomb! I found this recipe when I lived in Atlanta a few years ago. I was online searching for a good pimento cheese recipe and I found this one on the Southern Foodways website. It was when the site still had stories all over it about everything. It was so quaint, engaging and southern! I just loved that format! Today the site’s a bit different and I can no longer find the pimento cheese recipe on it. But not to fear, it’s available online if you know how to look for it – and it still tastes the same! YUM! The recipe is great and the story behind it is even better! I’ll let you see for yourself and I will include the recipe in it’s entirety – including the story. I especially like the way the recipe tells you to add a pinch of this or a dash of that. This helps make your batch your own because what is a pinch or a dash to you may be different for me. Also, it doesn’t say how much of the homemade mayo to use so I use most of it, but I keep a little extra on the side for cold leftover turkey sandwiches – it’s really good mayo! To Nan and Aunt Lella, thanks for sharing, we appreciate you both!
Photo to follow the next time I make this delicious pimento cheese. It’s total yum!