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Harper’s pimento cheese is just right for all occasions

By Robin Domeier
You Asked For It
Restaurant writer Robin Domeier tracks down Charlotte restaurant recipes that readers have requested. Domeier is owner of Nibbles Personal Chef.

More Information

  • More information

    Are you looking for a recipe from a Charlotte-area restaurant? Send your requests to Robin Domeier, Please include your name, why you like the recipe, the area where you live and the restaurant’s location.

  • Betty’s Pimento Cheese

    Tom Sasser recommends using 8 ounces of white extra-sharp and 8 ounces of yellow extra-sharp cheddar. When I made it, I doubled the amount of garlic powder and celery salt.

    1 pound extra sharp cheddar cheese

    1/2 cup Duke’s mayonnaise

    9 ounces whole pimentos, drained and roughly chopped

    2 to 3 tablespoons spicy brown mustard, or to taste

    1/4 teaspoon garlic powder, or to taste

    1/4 teaspoon celery salt, or to taste

    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

    2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

    1 teaspoon hot sauce (optional)

    LET cheese sit out at room temperature for 5 minutes, then grate by hand.

    COMBINE the grated cheese with the remaining ingredients in a food processor. Pulse until just incorporated. Do not overprocess.

    CHILL thoroughly before serving.

    YIELD: About 2 cups.

  • Harper’s Restaurant

    Where: 6518 Fairview Road (across from

    SouthPark) and 11059 Carolina Place Parkway (adjacent

    to Carolina Place Mall).

    Contact: 704-366-6688 (Fairview Road) and 704-541-5255 (Carolina Place Parkway).

Connie Beach in Davidson wants the recipe for Betty’s Pimento Cheese from Harper’s.

“My entire family thinks it’s the best pimento cheese we have ever tasted. It has just the right amount of thickness, and some special flavor we have never been able to identify. We even took a professional chef with us one night to see if she could figure it out, but she could not. We live about 30 minutes from the restaurant, so we are not able to indulge very often, and it would be wonderful to surprise my family with the recipe!”

It is the season for surprises, not to mention holiday gatherings. This pimento cheese, named for Betty Sasser, the mother of Harper’s founder Tom Sasser, is versatile enough to bring to party after party and serve it a different way every time.

You could go old school and serve it chilled with crackers, potato chips or crudités. You could serve it warm, perhaps with some pita chips. For a heavy hors d’oeuvre, you could serve burger sliders dolloped with warm pimento cheese.

If you have pimento cheese left after the party, you could enjoy it the way Sasser did as a kid – in a sandwich served with a bowl of tomato soup. It doesn’t get much better than that. Unless, of course, you slather it between two slices of white bread and make a grilled pimento cheese.

Robin Domeier is owner of Nibbles Personal Chef.

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