Our regular Costco shopping trip last weekend was interrupted by the sight of a feeding frenzy around one of the “road show” displays. For those of you who aren’t Costco shoppers, the store invites guest gourmet food vendors to set up sampling displays and offer their products for a few days. These events usually offer crazy good products for a really good price, so I’m always in line to see what is going on. In this case, cheerful workers were distributing cheese samples at lightning speed as they chatted with shoppers about mouth-watering recipe ideas. I popped a bite of Yancey’s Fancy Smoked Gouda into my mouth and immediately understood why people were stuffing cheese in their mouths as fast as they could! The pasteurized process cheese had a delicate, smoky flavor and a really creamy texture. Allen was just as impressed as I was, and so into the shopping cart it went.
Process (or processed) cheese is a combination of natural cheese and emulsifiers which make it a very uniform product that melts smoothly. It is great for cooking because it doesn’t separate when heated for long time periods as natural cheese does. American cheese is a very popular process cheese that most people have eaten at one time or another. While you might not bust out a process cheese to serve on a cheese tray at your next dinner party (unless your guests are five-year-olds), I think it is a really good option for cooking, especially when it is as tasty as this smoked gouda. I immediately thought of the smoked gouda pimento cheese that Karen and I pick up from Market Street’s deli whenever she is in town. It is so good that sometimes I don’t wait until she comes to town! I had a quick and easy version of it mixed up in under 10 minutes, and was pleasantly surprised to find that Yancey’s Fancy had a firmer texture than some process cheese, so it was very easy to grate.
Smoked Gouda Pimento Cheese
- 8 ounces Yancey’s Fancy Smoked Gouda Cheese, grated
- 1 – 2 ounce jar diced pimento
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Grate cheese and place in a medium mixing bowl. Add all other ingredients and blend well. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before serving.
Our delivery vehicle of choice for this savory pimento cheese was Primizie Crispbreads Smoked Dutch Gouda and Garlic flavor, which was the only flavor we hadn’t yet tasted. As with the other crispbreads, it was stellar. The combination made for a great contrast between super-crunchy and ultra-creamy, and the double gouda and garlic layers were almost too good for words. This duo should definitely have an addiction warning label attached!
Yancey’s Fancy’s company roots go back to post-World War I New York, when Leo Kutter emigrated from Germany and began using his European cheese-making skills to produce Limburger cheese. Mr. Kutter left his business to his sons at his death in 1962. Richard and Tony Kutter partnered with master cheesemaker Brian Bailey in the mid-1990’s, who helped them expand their variety of cheeses. In 1998 when the Kutters retired, Mr. Bailey, John Yancey and Mike Wimble bought the business and Yancey’s Fancy was launched.
If you are a Costco member, you should definitely check out the Yancey’s Fancy website for their roadshow schedule. If you aren’t a Costco member, you can order online directly from the website. We brought home two more flavors of Yancey’s Fancy cheese, and we will be sharing some recipe ideas soon!