I had an extra day off last weekend, so I did a bit of successful cooking and thought I’d share. One of these recipes is just in time for your Saint Patrick’s Day celebration. But first, let’s start off with a Southern classic.
My husband, David, is a big fan of pimento cheese. Now I’m assuming, first of all, that you already know that the only acceptable brand of pimento cheese to buy is Palmetto Cheese. Using anything else would be like using some other mayonnaise besides Duke’s: insane. So, now that we have your store-bought items straightened out, we’ll move on to homemade. Every once in a while, David gets a hankerin’ for homemade pimento cheese, and the best all-around recipe we’ve found is, of course, from Garden & Gun magazine. You can access the recipe here.
Doesn’t it look colorful and fresh? Be sure to grate your own cheese, rather than using a bag of pre-shredded cheddar. Companies put additives in shredded cheese in order to keep it from sticking together, and you don’t want your beautiful pimento cheese spread to be full of cellulose or potato starch. Do use the spring onions instead of substituting chopped yellow onions. The flavor is slightly different, and the green bits are so much more appealing. There are two different heat-producing ingredients, but don’t skip either one! Just moderate the quantities to taste.
Not that I would ever admit to tasting it, but when David put this pimento cheese on one of Melissa McGhee’s (“Satisfying Eats,” left) cheesy biscuits with a slice or two of bacon—Oh, my! Don’t tell your cardiologist.
Melissa McGhee posted a new recipe for Irish Soda Bread—grain-free, of course!—last week, so I tried that, too. Her recipe can be found on her website here, and be sure to “like” Satisfying Eats on Facebook for new low-carb, healthy recipes all the time.
Since Irish Soda Bread is traditionally a quick bread, you will not miss any yeastiness in this loaf. I am used to a plain soda bread, but this one has a couple of special touches. Melissa has added caraway seeds and raisins, although I have to admit that I did not have raisins on hand, so I used dried cranberries, which I “chopped” by placing them on a cutting board and running my chef’s knife through them a few times. Next time, raisins! I also smashed the caraway seeds around in a mortar and pestle for extra aroma and flavor. They really added a lot to the bread.
Here is the finished loaf, which I baked for 26 minutes, and it was nicely browned. It was smaller than I expected, as you can see here on the cooling rack, so if you have a large family, be sure to bake two. They are very simple to make. The texture is very much like traditional soda bread, and with the raisins, it was almost scone-like. We had the leftovers with breakfast the next morning, as a matter of fact. This bread will definitely be an addition to our St. Patrick’s Day meal!
I have really enjoyed Melissa McGhee’s first cookbook, above, in the past few months. My favorite recipe is still probably her cheesy biscuits, but a couple of weeks ago I tried her “Famous Cheesecake,” and it was just fabulous. For a cheesecake, it was also pretty easy.
I hope you and your family enjoy these two low-carb recipes in your house, too! Let us know how they turn out.