I love life!

Hi, I am Jo and this is my blog about my life. Here you will find entries on cooking, gardening, food safety and the interesting things happening in my search for an inexpensive and healthy way of living. My home is located in North Florida and I am relearning how to take care of myself at almost 50. This is the deep South so my garden and season may be a bit different than yours. I look forward to seeing what you have to say as time passes. Read on and have a beautiful day!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Pimento Cheese and Beer..... or.... Why I will never be stick thin!

Today I made pimento cheese. So yummy! Years ago at a small Country Club in Durham, NC, the little old lady who ran the snack bar taught me how to make real southern pimento cheese spread. It was so easy and so delicious. Pieces of shredded cheddar mixed with plain old mayonnaise and bits of canned roasted red pepper, adding sweetness to the spread. It was seasoned with only Tabasco and salt.

Spread on cheap white bread and grilled... OMG.....heavenly. When you add an ice cold beer on the side you enter another whole dimension...nirvana! From the same amazing woman I also learned about good ham salad and cheese straws. Anyone see where this is leading? Needless to say I was the thinnest of any time in my life. However, that was most likely from the pack a day habit, pot of coffee a day and the 12-16 hour workdays more than the food.

Greasy cheeseburgers with bacon, chili cheese fries, chili cheese burgers with slaw on them, 1/4 lb hot dogs with slaw and mustard, Carolina BBQ, chicken and dumplings, peach cobbler, dump cake, mustard greens and collards greens simply swimming in bacony brothy goodness, cornbread- Oh my! Long live the food of the south! All of it was amazing. Then I went to Culinary School and discovered warm buttery croissants stolen from the bakeshop and eaten with hot rich coffee to which full fat cream has been added. Followed by tastes of Tuit Amande, Creme DuBarry, Crepe au Crabe Benedictine. Yet, I was still thin. Again the pack a day, pot of coffee and long hours most likely contributed.

Then years later, reality hot and I stopped smoking. My weight went up but still was manageable. Grad school  and running came along and by that time I was vegetarian. Weight back down. Lovely!

Then when I moved back to Florida, running sucked (from asthma) and I gave up being vegetarian, moved in with my then boyfriend, now hubby, a chef. We cooked, we ate, we drank wine, such good food!! Weight really went up. Started doing serious yoga and riding my bike to work. Weight back down.

Yo-yo describes me. Got laid off and began sitting a lot on the next job, some yoga, no bike riding....Guess what?...Yep, weight back up. Asthma got a lot worse and I was sick a lot....on steroids... you see where this is going?

Today, I run when asthma permits. which happens to be several days on most weeks. Slowly, some of the inches are coming off. The weight...not as much but I feel tons better. The asthma is under control. A vegetarian diet is what I am eating most of the time. So bye bye double bacon cheeseburger.
But hey Pimento Cheese is still vegetarian and Gluten Free Beer Rocks. Tonight I had a little bit of nirvana, on gluten free crackers with a beer. It ain't Carolina BBQ but I am loving it!!!!    



  1. LOL, enjoyed your post. And welcome to The Club! We are all different and looks like I have a problem with sugar and your issue is fat levels. You'll do fine, there are so many wonderful things to enjoy that if you concentrate on developing things you can eat while getting healthier, maybe you won't miss the full-fat stuff.

    I don't really care for beer. And the thought of that much greasy stuff kind of turns my stomach. I do love fried potatoes, but they are cooked in olive oil and then only enough to keep them from sticking to the pan.

    You've got a big advantage since you and your hubby are so skilled in the culinary department.

    Hubs and I are going to have an omelet this morning. Normally we have oatmeal but it's Saturday and we're in the mood for something else.... You go girl, you can do this, just don't be too strict with yourself. Hugs XOXOXO

  2. An omelet sounds lovely! I can;t eat that much fat anymore but when I was younger- look out! Now Bacon is a stretch for us and usually used to flavor greens or in shrimp and grits.
    Thanks for all of the love and support! You better be taking care of yourself and stay off that knee
    Hugs back XXXOOO.


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