For the filling:
1. Drain the tomatoes (if using canned–and keep the juice for Bloody Marys!) and dice them into 1-inch pieces. In a medium bowl combine the tomatoes, basil, salt and pepper, and half of the olive oil. Toss with your hands until all the tomatoes have a little oil on them. Pour the remaining half of the olive oil onto a sheet pan, rubbing with your hands to coat the bottom of the pan. Spread the tomatoes on the pan in a single layer. Roast the tomatoes in the oven about 15 minutes or until they dry up a little and start to shrivel slightly.
2. Fill the bottom of the pie crust with the tomato mixture. Spread the prepared pimento cheese over the tomatoes. In a small bowl, toss bread or Ritz cracker crumbs with melted butter, garlic, parmesan cheese and pepper, and sprinkle over the top of the pie.
3. Place pie in oven 10-15 minutes, just enough to warm and brown the crumb top. Remove from oven and serve slightly warm.
I’ve been making Stephanie of 3191’s recipe for Pimento Cheese for a few years now–it’s become a New Year’s Eve tradition (served with Sweet Potato Biscuits) that my family now requests. But I wanted to include Emily Wallace’s grandmother recipe–which is also delicious and shows some of the variation in style. Of course in North & South Carolina you’re pretty much required to make it with Duke’s mayonnaise — you do make it with Hellmann’s or another sweet mayo, I might not include the sugar.
Adapted from Charlotte Heavner Wallace’s (Emily Wallace’s grandmother) recipe
1 lb. sharp cheddar (Charlotte used red-rind hoop cheese)
1 4-oz. jar pimentos, diced
4 Tablespoons mayonnaise (Duke’s recommended)
1/2 teaspoon mustard
2 Tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon sugar
Dash vinegary hot sauce, like Cholula or Tapatio
1. Grate cheese into a medium-sized bowl and add entire contents of pimento jar. Mix with a wooden spoon. Add other ingredients and stir to combine. Taste and add any more of the above ingredients according to your preference.