Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Papa's Pimento Cheese Will Go Well on Summer Sandwich ; Cheese of the Week

Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Papa's Pimento Cheese Will Go Well on Summer Sandwich ; Cheese of the Week

Article excerpt

John Keck Papa's Cheese

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When's the last time you enjoyed a sandwich of that great Southern summer favorite, pimento cheese - or 'minner cheese?

It's a not a dieter's best friend, but it's marvelous casual food in moderation, great for quick lunches with soup or a salad, or as a snack with crackers in the picnic basket. It also rounds out school lunches, and in cooler weather makes a nice, warm, gooey grilled cheese to serve next to chili.

We might not be Raleigh-Durham when it comes to love of pimento cheese, but Southern Indiana has its share, and we especially like it when it's homemade.

The next time you're at Winestyles on Burkhardt Road, ask owner Angie Keck to try a bit of "Papa's Pimento Cheese," a recipe handed down from her husband John's great-grandfather.

"I can remember as a young boy, 6 or 7 or 8 years old, I was in my grandfather's kitchen in Mount Vernon," said John Keck.

"We called him Papa. I would watch him make his pimento cheese. He had an old hand grinder and he told me that he put three kinds of cheeses in the recipe, and that the recipe was secret and that he got it from his father. I wasn't allowed to tell anyone what went in it. I thought it was the coolest thing in the world."

When Papa died in 1972, Keck received a surprise.

"Papa was an attorney, so everything in his will was very legal and precise. When it came time to divide up his assets, just about everything went to my grandmother, as it should have, but he had one thing that he left to me - that pimento cheese recipe. My family has been mad at me ever since because I have it and they don't."

Papa's special cheese spread contains three cheeses and seven other ingredients. We can assume pimentos are one of them. The rest? Why waste time on speculation when we could be eating a tub right now?

"When I make it, I go in the back and grind it by hand and do it just like Papa did it," said Keck. …

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