Kimchi. Plus pimento cheese? Together? Hear me out.
Believe it or not, kimchi and cheese have been hitting it off for quite some time now. Like celebrity couple Bennifer, the duo has been cleverly named “Kimcheese,” and we can’t get enough. Fatty, salty, creamy cheese with briny, spicy, tangy kimchi? Talk about chemistry! Which got us thinking . . .
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Why not combine kimchi with pimento cheese?
Pimento cheese is a flavorful spreadable cheese full of cheddar, mayo, and chopped sweet pimentos. Our friends over at Cook’s Country developed a foolproof recipe for Pimento Cheese that I’ve made time and time again. It’s a practical combination of sharp cheddar, mayo, and cream cheese (so it’s spreadable straight from the fridge). Some Worcestershire and lemon juice add brightness and depth without overpowering the cheese.
Since pimentos have a briny and spicy quality, we figured they would pair well with kimchi.
We were right. You get heat, crunch, and funk, adding considerable depth to something that’s already cheesy and delightful.
This spread is delicious on its own, but I highly recommend toasting it. All you need is your kimchi-pimento spread, a hearty piece of bread, and your broiler. Patience in letting it cool before diving in is highly recommended, but from my burnt mouth to yours, I can say I understand the struggle.
Kimchi–Pimento Cheese Toast is totally my new favorite snack.
Kimchi–Pimento Cheese Toast
Makes enough for 8 toasts
- 1/3 cup mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 8 ounces yellow sharp cheddar cheese, divided
- 2 tablespoons pimentos, patted dry and minced
- 1 cup cabbage kimchi, drained with 1 tablespoon juice reserved, chopped fine
- 8 (1/2-inch-thick) slices rustic white bread
- Thinly sliced scallions
1. Adjust oven rack 8 inches from broiler element and heat broiler. Whisk mayonnaise, cream cheese, lemon juice, Worcestershire, and cayenne together in large bowl.
2. Shred 4 ounces cheddar on large holes of box grater. Shred remaining 4 ounces cheddar on small holes of box grater. Stir cheddar, pimentos, and kimchi and reserved juice into mayonnaise mixture until thoroughly combined. (Kimchi–pimento cheese mixture can be refrigerated for up to 1 week.)
3. Line rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with vegetable oil spray. Arrange bread slices on prepared sheet and broil until toasted, 1 to 2 minutes per side. When bread is cool enough to handle, spread ¼ cup kimchi–pimento cheese mixture evenly onto each slice of bread. Broil until cheddar is browned, 1 to 2 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes, then sprinkle with scallions and serve.