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The American South was my home for 42 of my nearly 54 years (so far) on this earth. In those aforementioned years, I don’t remember ever not knowing about (and understanding the importance of) the Masters and the sacred institution that is the Augusta National Golf Club. For a true Southerner, attending the Masters is, if not a rite of passage, definitely a bucket list item. That’s probably also a true statement for any avid golf fan.
Since I’m not a true Southerner — now, that’s not to say I don’t have a lot of Southern qualities — 42 years is a long time, am I right?! It was inevitable that I adopt at least some Southern traits. But I digress… As a
Damn Yankee™ northerner by birth, I always assumed a forgiveness of sorts for never (ever) caring about golf. Yes, golf courses are (usually) pretty beautiful, and Augusta’s course is second to none. See the photographic evidence below:
Confession: I do miss the trees with all that beautiful, haunting Spanish moss. Sigh, again, I digress…
Yes, I’ve played golf, and several of those times were on very nice courses. It was pleasant to spend time with friends out in the sunshine and sure, it was slightly entertaining to swing the club and see how well I could do. But really, it was a great big “meh” for me.
All of that backstory to get to this gem of an article that was published earlier this month on Atlas Obscura:
Now, that’s a great headline. Almost as good is the URL slug: /masters-pimento-cheese-sandwich/
Of course, I had to read it, and I was not disappointed. This story has everything:
— Great writing
Sports Golf (sorry, couldn’t resist)
— Drama and secrets (more than a few)
— A reference to the Keebler elves (what?!)
— “Embittered pimento czars” caught up in “PimentoGate” (I have to know more!)
— Sandwiches (not just sandwiches, but pimento cheese sandwiches)
— and, what is allegedly the recipe for the pimento cheese sandwiches served at the Masters in Augusta
Pimento cheese sandwiches were a staple in my childhood and, for the love of all that is holy, I wanted that coveted recipe. Not ashamed to admit that its connection to the epitome-of-all-that-is-Southern Masters tourney was a large part of the allure. Also not ashamed to admit that I searched for other pimento cheese-related content on the web — and felt really, really Southern doing so. That is, until I found this interesting article that said this:
The first time I really looked into the history of pimento cheese, I wrote a long article that opened, “Pimento cheese has a dirty little secret. The ‘pâté of the South’ isn’t really very Southern at all.”
After devouring that article, this
Damn Yankee™ northerner by birth had a good laugh and said, “Well, bless their hearts.”