Pimento cheese Deviled Eggs.
This is the perfect appetizer for any party, any time of year. It’s easy. It’s do ahead. It’s pretty, and at least here in the South, it’s beloved.
The general rule of thumb for parties in Nashville is the expectation of bringing a dish with an invitation. This was not true of parties in Pennsylvania or California, unless it was very specifically a community potluck.
I personally don’t want people bringing dishes to my parties, for there is just food out there I can’t put on my table. You surely know what I’m talking about. Or am I just awful? But seriously, my family would have died if someone showed up at our door with some American frankenfood. Desserts, wine, fruit, flowers, nuts, candy, all totally acceptable as long as the desserts were homemade. Some family members would have been insulted if someone brought a hot covered dish because in our family, the role of the host was to be food provider and this, of course, was done with pleasure. After all, we are Italian.
Now that I live in the South, I embrace the “covered dish” aspect of a party, as far as taking food. I actually have to restrain myself from taking four or five dishes, which is some kind of obsessive compulsive twitch I’ve developed since living here. Italians also have a fear of not having enough food at a party or at any meal for that matter.
You may not be aware of how neurotic, snobby and picky Italians can be. It would not be uncommon for one of my aunts to be looking over the food just to make sure only family members made it, or to hear a whisper “who made that?” to ascertain the quality of the dish. That same aunt refused to go to potlucks, because she had a fear of butter, but that’s another story.
The flip side of that darkness is that Italians generally (at least a generation ago) delivered fantastic food, except there is another caveat.
Italians (at least in my family) were so over the top with this food snobbery, that they might pick apart another Italian’s food if they come from what they considered an undesirable region. An undesirable region is any region their family didn’t come from. After having been to Italy and hearing the folklore and stories of feuds and territorial fights, I understood the root of this.
And, just to make you feel better, I have had epic failures at parties where I’ve brought something no one would eat. A few years ago I made a spicy tuna salad that went untouched and my signature cupcakes that no one wanted to gain weight on. It happens.
The funny thing is that when I do go to potluck type parties, my friends will be anxious for me to try their food and a little worried because I write a food blog. I want to tell them, don’t worry because I write a food blog. Worry because I am Italian. Please see the humor in this. It’s also in my genes to be gracious and nice and kind, and I’ll be the first to tell someone how wonderful their dish is. If I taste something awful, I don’t let anyone see me cover it with a napkin and head to the trash can. You know you’ve done this too.
But, one thing I’ve discovered here in the South is the power of the deviled egg.
Take deviled eggs to a party and they are gobbled up so quickly, you can grab your empty dish and head to the next party. People eat them in one bite, maybe two and grab another. Even the dieters eat them. You know the type, the people who tell you they are on a diet at a Christmas party. I’m wondering now if that’s true or if they are just as weird as I am.
I had my first pimento cheese deviled egg at a food blogger’s pot luck and it was my favorite thing at the party. It was a little bit different than this recipe in that the pieces of cheese were more visible, while this is made more smooth, and both versions are good.
These Pimento Cheese Deviled Eggs are extra special, because they are made with pimento cheese and a little heat. For ease, you can buy your best gourmet pimento cheese or simply make your own. The only hard part about this is making those perfect hard boiled eggs, recipe here.
The crazy confession I have to make is that these are my first deviled eggs that I’ve ever made, and one of the best I’ve ever eaten. So tell me, what do you bring to potlucks and when you throw parties are you hopeful that people will bring food or bring the booze?
- 1 cup shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese
- 2 tablespoons cream cheese
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
- ⅛ teaspoon smoked paprika (or to taste)
- ½ teaspoon white pepper
- 1 tablespoon sriracha sauce
- 1½ tablespoons pimento, plus enough for garnish
- 14 hard boiled eggs (always make extra for mistakes and tasting)
- 1 cup pimento cheese
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon white pepper
- 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
- Mix cream cheese with Worcestershire.
- Mix all cheeses with sriracha, pimento, salt, pepper. Refrigerate, while making hard boiled eggs.
- Make hard boiled eggs. Recipe here.
- Run hard boiled eggs under cold water. Peel.
- Mix mayonnaise, mustard together with salt and pepper. Mix thoroughly, until yolks are like a spread, no crumbles. Mix with pimento cheese.
- Taste for heat, salt, and mayonnaise. Add only as needed. Put into a pastry bag fitted with a large 1 M or star tip.If you don't have, use a plastic bag and cut a very small hole in one corner.
- Slice lengthwise and empty yolks into a bowl.
- Squeeze mixture onto eggs. Refrigerate covered, by placing in a large baking dish.
- Serve within 24 hours.