cheesy goodness

I have a lot of quirky feelings toward food.

I don’t like ketchup.  At all.

I don’t like cucumbers.  At all.  Or pickles.

I’m not a huge fan (aka, avoid at all costs) food that require eating with my hands.  This includes, but is not limited to ~ wings, crab legs & ribs. When I finally experienced boneless short ribs in my adult years, I was amazed at how good they tasted.  But pick up ribs and gnaw away, trying to find something that is fulfilling?

Nah.  No thanks.

So when I was younger, and my parents grilled, I looked forward to one thing.

Hickory Smoked Cheese Loaf

You have no idea how amazing this stuff is.  And it’s SO EASY to make. I remember when my mother passed the recipe on to me, and I made it for John the first time.  Of course, I regaled him with all sorts of childhood memories of mine that involved the bread.  My mother first got the recipe from a neighbor in Pittsburgh who lived in the same complex as my parents when I was born.  I remember when we moved back to Pittsburgh ~ I was probably about 11 ~ and those same neighbors welcomed us back to the ‘Burgh, and took us to Sorgel’s Orchard to get pastries and bread on a chilly October Saturday morning, as we waited for our moving truck to deliver all our worldly possessions to our newest address.  In the time since, my parents and those neighbors have lost touch ~ I believe a divorce occurred.  But I have deeply fond memories of them.  In fact, my first set of golf clubs were from them.  But that’s another tangent.

The point is, food has served multiple purposes across the tapestry of time ~ it upholds traditions, and it sparks memories.  It teaches a granddaughter her heritage and culture ~ it expresses love.  I could wax poetic all evening, but the bottom line is, Hickory Smoke Cheese Loaf was, and remains, part of my food tapestry.

And I’m gonna share it with you.  This recipe, pretty much taken word for word from the most amazing mother that ever existed.  I love you Mama Bear.

What you Need:

1 loaf fresh French bread

1/2 c softened butter

1 cup shredded natural sharp Cheddar cheese (about 4 oz)

2 Tbsp snipped fresh parsley (but dried stuff will get the job done)

1/2 tsp Hickory Smoked Salt (or smoke flavoring for BBQ)

2 tsp good Worcestershire sauce

What you Do:

1. Cut bread slightly on the diagonal until almost through the bread, but not quite.

2.  Mix all remaining ingredients.

3. Spread on bread slices, one side only.  Maintain the shape of the loaf.

4.  Wrap tightly in aluminum foil.

5.  Heat on BBQ grill or in oven for about 15 minutes at 350 degrees.

6.  Make sure the bread is fully warm (you want to make sure the cheese has melted on each slice).

7.  Serve immediately.

Trust me, you’ll love it.


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