Sunday, June 01, 2008

Pimiento cheese

Pimiento cheese is definitely a southern thing--I don't ever recall having it or knowing of it until I moved to Texas some forty-plus years ago. But, not being a pepper lover, I sort of avoided it. Then I tasted it tentatively, and now every once in a while I want some. I always buy it in the smallest possible container and end up throwing most of it away--one sandwich or a half sandwich and I'm done. I never served it to my children as they were growing up, and Jordan says to this day she doesn't like it, probably because so many of her friends' mothers tried to urge her to eat it.

The other day though in Southern Living I encountered a recipe that sounded really good and decided to try it. Of course, I doctored it a bit. It called for a jar of roasted red peppers--forget that! And by mistake I bought the smallest jar of pimiento, so I had half the amount specified for the amount of cheese I had. Where it called for chopped pickled jalopeno slices, I sort of guessed at the amount. I know Melinda in my office makes her spread really hot, and I always presumed she used quantities of Tabasco or chile powder, but the jalopenos sounded good. The recipe also called for cream cheese and just a touch of mayo, plus a mix of sharp and mild cheddar. It's hard to make because you end trying to process a really stiff ball of food. But I had a sandwich today for lunch, and it was really good--a much smoother texture than what you buy, and because there were more jalopenos than pimientos, it had a nice bite without the pepper taste. Of course, most who like jalopenos would say my spread is so mild that you'd barely know the jalopenos were there. I was sort of pleased with the result. I'll see if Jordan will taste a bite tonight. (She did, says she still didn't like it, but she really wants to like pimiento cheese--go figure!).

We took Jacob tonight when we took dinner to Jeannie and Jim and sit on the patio with a glass of wine--Jeannie's patio always has a breeze when no air is stirring anywhere else. To encourage Jacob about a car trip, Jordan kept saying, "We're going to Jeannie's!" So in the car he kept saying, "Jeannie's, Jeannie's." He was not the least disappointed. He thought Jeannie was wonderful, and he discovered porch swings for the first time--also thought that was wonderful.

I'm weary with mysteries tonight, thought I appreciate, Bebe Bahnsen, your comment--I did read tonight a lot about the serial killings of elderly ladies in Columbus, Georgia in the '70s. And I do think there will be a serial killer in the new novel. But the AgentyQuery list has me sort of discouraged. I may call a couple of old friends in publishing tomorrow and see what they say--one an editor of westerns and one an agent, with whom I long ago agreed to disagree. Wonder if he's forgiving? When I read and learn on these websites, I realize I was never very smart about "planning my long-range career." I just wrote and waited to see what would happen. Now, at this late stage, I must move beyond that. I would think I have a lot going for me--publication history, awards, memberships, etc.--but who knows in this world what that means. Meantime, I'm reading about Scotland.

My old cat got very finicky today. He wasn't eating, whereas he's usually after me every hour on the hour when I'm home to feed him. So of course I went from frustration at him to worry. I threw out the food in his bowl and put in fresh. No interest. Finally I gave him some straight "people" tuna, which is the worst thing you can give a cat with incipient kidney disease. He loved it, and after that he began to eat. So now I have this can of tuna in the fridge. Do I give it to him? Will he be spoiled and refuse to eat anything else? Do I throw it out? Owning a senile cat is not easy, folks! Here's a picture--not very good--of Wywy. Jacob adores him; Wywy hates Jacob. Wywy's name is Wynona--but after he'd had that name for quite a while, we discovered "she" is a he. To this day, I have a gender pronoun problem and often end up saying, "He, she, it." If I say "He," Jordan, who is so used to "She" says, "You know I hate it when you do that!" Actually, Wywy is a lot prettier than this picture. He has a huge, fluffy gray tail, and he can be very sweet.

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