10 Decadent Classic Southern Dishes

Pimento-Cheese

If there's one thing we Southerners have mastered, it's food. Some of the best cuisine in the world is from Dixie, and I think it's time we celebrate it. Here's a list of ten of the most decadent classic Southern dishes. My hope is that you'll read these recipes and be inspired to cook -- and if you're not familiar with Southern cuisine, maybe you'll try something new.

Instead of a typical countdown list format, I've structured this list much in the way a meal may arrive at a restaurant table -- starters, sides, main courses, and desserts. Enjoy!

10. Pimento Cheese

Pimento cheese is a staple in Southern refrigerators -- a simple, versatile recipe. Creamy and smooth,  yet with an appealing sharpness, pimento cheese is perfect on a sandwich (with or without bacon) or with crackers. The famed Varsity restaurant in Atlanta and Athens serves it on a chili dog, and Lisa De Pasquale and I recently discovered how good it is on a hamburger.

Maybe I'm biased, but my mom, Marcia Queen, makes the best pimento cheese I've ever tasted. You won't find her name in any cookbooks that I know of, so here's an exclusive recipe.

Ingredients

2 cups softened sharp cheddar cheese

1 4 oz can diced pimentos, drained

1/2 cup mayo

1 block softened cream cheese

Salt & pepper to taste

Directions

Mix and enjoy.