One of my favorite things about living on Mackinac Island is the unexpected guests. So when the kids called to say they were on their way up with the littles, Dave and I were excited.
But that also means I need to get some food ready. When I’m home in Grand Rapids this means stocking up on different kinds of cheese, crackers and juice boxes. Here on the Island there are no cars and that means I need to be more careful about my food choices. Carrying five kinds of cheese, several boxes of crackers, and heavy juice boxes the half mile home from the grocery store is not fun let me tell you. Instead, I’ve decided to make a single spread that is everyone's favorite. Pimento Cheese Dip. The kids like the bright orange color spread on buttery Ritz crackers and the adults like the hint of spice.
This wasn’t a completely unique idea. Dave and I often treat ourselves to the pimento cheese spread at Mary’s Bistro Draught House. Their version of creamy cheese dip was all the inspiration I needed to make it for home.
So what is a pimento anyway? Other than a snip of red nestled into a green olive I was unfamiliar with this ingredient. Turns out a pimento is simply a small Spanish red pepper, roasted, peeled, and cut into tiny squares so they can be stuffed in olives. The pepper itself is very mild and while olives and pimento cheese dip are it’s primary purpose, it is also used to make paprika. Smoked paprika is one of my favorite spices. What could be better than a pimento cheese dip that's smoky too?
The recipe is below. Enjoy!