We wouldn't normally include a recipe with a restaurant review, but the pimento cheese that Adam West serves at Local Yocal BBQ and Grill is so good, we had to ask: That silken texture, those elegant strands of cheddar, the subtle balance of flavors — how did he do it? West resisted for a minute ("You can't give it all away!") then generously shared the details.
Smoked Red Pepper Pimento Cheese
3 red bell peppers
1/2 pound Tillamook sharp cheddar
1 cup Hellmann's mayonnaise
1/4 cup Crystal hot sauce
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
Optional garnish, additional raw red pepper and green onion
Lightly coat the bell peppers in vegetable oil, salt and pepper; smoke directly on the grate of a smoker at 225 degrees for one hour until soft (or roast in a 400-degree oven for about 45 minutes, until skins blister and slightly burn). Transfer to bowl and cover until cool. Peel and seed peppers. Cut two peppers into quarter-inch dice. Purée the remaining pepper in a blender until smooth.
Using the large hole of a box grater, grate the cheddar using long strokes to get long shreds of cheese.
In large bowl, mix the diced and puréed pepper with all of the other ingredients except the cheese. When mixture is uniform, gently stir in the cheese. Cover and refrigerate to let flavors develop (best made the day before, and can be made up to a week ahead). Before serving, let sit covered at room temperature for one hour. If desired, garnish with thin strands of raw red pepper and thinly sliced green onion.