Like sweet tea or shrimp and grits, pimento cheese is an iconic Southern food, and for good reason: it's fast, cheap, easy, and oh so versatile. Start with the basic triple threat — cheese, mayo, and diced pimentos — then add in extras, like worcestershire sauce and Tabasco, for extra pizzazz. Get the recipe and learn more serving suggestions when you watch now.
While I love an overstuffed sub, some occasions call for a daintier sandwich. One of my favorites is the traditional cucumber and cream cheese sandwich served at high tea. On this week's episode of Between the Bread, I show you how to make the American version with this recipe for a Benedictine cheese sandwich. Created in Louisville, KY, at the turn of the century, this crustless sandwich combines cucumber, cream cheese, and scallions and is perfect for serving at a bridal shower, a luncheon, or a sophisticated picnic. Watch the video to learn how to make this easy, chic sandwich this Summer.
Today kicks off the 139th Kentucky Derby! Watching the horse race is a great excuse to host a party and an even better excuse to enjoy some delicious Southern cuisine. Doesn't drinking a mint julep and eating pimento cheese sound like an awesome way to spend an afternoon? If you're ready to take a culinary trip (without the airline ticket), browse the best of our Southern recipes now.
— Additional reporting by Lisette Mejia
Headed to the horse races this weekend — or just looking to cool off? Then settle in with a frosty mint julep. It's a drink that's perfectly balanced: it's sweet, clean, and potent all at the same time. Although it involves crushed ice, it's an easy cocktail to make at home. Watch the video now to see how it's done.
Kentucky is perhaps best known for thoroughbred horse racing, mint juleps, and — lately — its national championship-winning college basketball teams. But the state is quite a foodie haven with a rich culinary tradition.
Thanks to the many ethnic influences on its cuisine, Kentuckians have developed a diverse array of foods over the last few centuries that make the state a worthy destination for Derby Day and beyond. Take a minute to learn more about some of the state's delicious offerings.
Burgoo: While this stew was not invented in Kentucky, the state has molded the dish into something all its own. There was a time when burgoo derived its main ingredients from whatever meat was available (squirrel, opossum, raccoon, and venison were popular choices), but today you'll find most restaurants fill their hearty pots with pork, chicken, and mutton.
Mutton barbecue: Western Kentucky was once the state's center for wool production, so mutton became a popular meat. However, the most widely available sheep were often older and their meat tougher and too strongly flavored. Slow-cooked barbecue became an efficient way to soften and season the meat. Today, Owensboro, KY, is still renowned for its delicious mutton barbecue.
Keep reading to see more Kentucky favorites.
The Kentucky Derby is next weekend, and even if you're not a horse-racing aficionado, getting into the spirit for this big Spring event can make for a seriously fun party. Let's be real: who doesn't love an excuse to wear over-the-top Spring fashions and drink pretty bourbon-filled beverages? If you're needing a little inspiration, here are some tips for ways to bring the Derby spirit to your home.
Set the Scene
Before the race, you've got to set the mood. In the décor department, channel the Derby's nickname "Run For the Roses" with big bouquets of lovely fresh flowers. For a modern take on traditional bluegrass music, look to the bands Railroad Earth and Assembly of Dust to provide the soundtrack. Everyone will be asking whose music is playing.
Assemble a Southern Spread
I'm rarely inclined to re-create a restaurant dish at home, as they often involve multiple components best executed in a setting where a coterie of chefs and prep cooks can pitch in to their prep. That said, I knew I'd have to break my rule after obsessing over a biscuit topped with pimento cheese, prosciutto, and microgreens at California's Artisan Cheese Festival.
Thankfully, none of the components involved are particularly trying to produce. Pimento cheese involves little more than a few swipes of a grater; drop biscuits are a dump-and-stir operation; the other ingredients are a mere matter of sourcing. Combine these all into a rustic finger food, and the result is a hearty appetizer far greater than the sum of their already dangerously enticing parts. Make them yourself, and I'm sure you'll agree.
Flaky, multilayered biscuits are unbeatable, but when I want to whip up a batch of biscuits in a flash, the supersimple drop biscuit comes into play. These biscuits — essentially a dump-and-stir operation, aided by the heat of a cast-iron skillet — are a useful addition to your baking arsenal for days when a buttery treat needs to come together with minimal effort.
These are best warm (or reheated) and are tangy enough to be enjoyed plain, thanks to a hefty dose of buttermilk. They're extra special when drizzled with honey or split in half and spread with jam or a hearty pat of butter.
As a California girl by way of New England, I had yet to taste the wonder-inducing substance that is pimento cheese till a few weeks prior. Let's just say that since that first sharp, creamy, and all-around mind-bogglingly delicious bite, I've been making up for lost time and then some. Luckily, I live with a Southern lady who shares a passion for all things culinary related, and — as luck would have it — comes from a family that's involved in the restaurant and catering business. So, when I decided to re-create this revelatory retro treat I knew exactly who to turn to.
Tangy, twangy, sharp but smooth, and studded with chunks of sweet pimento peppers, this classic, no-frills recipe comes courtesy of my roommate's stepmother — who happens to own a catering business — and is pretty darn perfect. If you've yet to become acquainted with this Southern luncheon staple, there's no time like the present — whip up an addictive batch today.
While I most often associate bourbon milk punch with holiday festivities, Winter months are always an appropriate time for this slushy, granita-like cocktail made with milk, bourbon, and powdered sugar. In Louisiana and Mississippi, households pride themselves on bourbon milk punch recipes. There are arguments about whether you should use vanilla ice cream or whole milk and if the punch should have bourbon or brandy. The recipe varieties are endless; my mom even admits to making diet milk punches with her friends using skim milk and Sweet'n Low.
The following is my favorite milk punch recipe, made with whole milk and bourbon. The whole milk gives it enough creaminess and body, and the vanilla and nutmeg make me nostalgic for a snowy Winter day. The best part is you can control the sweetness of the beverage as well as the strength. Just remember, as the milk punch freezes, it won't be as sweet as it is in liquid form. Due to the bourbon, the milk does not completely freeze, and the frozen punch can be easily scraped into a slushy cocktail. Do as the natives in New Orleans, and drink this cocktail during brunch on Winter days.