Maybe in other places in France you can buy roasted sweet red peppers, packed in jars, in the local supermarkets. I have come across them once in a while, but not in the supermarkets in Saint-Aignan. I went to Super U yesterday to look for some because I wanted to make pimento cheese, a standard preparation in the U.S. South.
I had bought a wedge of Mimolette cheese last week and making it into pimento cheese sounded like a good idea. It was "young" (mild) Mimolette and was made in the Netherlands. At Super U I looked for a jar or tin of roasted red peppers ("pimentos" in U.S. parlance) but struck out. However, I found a wedge of aged (riper, harder, sharper) Mimolette, made in France, that I thought would give good flavor combined with the younger cheese. The package said the Mimolette demi-vieille was aged for a minimum of six months.
I also found fresh red bell peppers and I knew I could roast them myself. It was Walt's suggestion as a solution to the lack of roasted peppers in jars. So I didn't come home empty-handed. How do you make pimento cheese? In this case, first you roast the peppers until the skin starts to blacken and blister, and until the peppers start to collapse. Then you split them open and remove the skin, the stem, and the seeds. Next you grate the cheese or cheeses you're using.
To the grated cheese(s), add some softened cream cheese and mix well. For a pound (450 grams) of grated cheese, you need between 5 and 8 oz. (150 to 225 grams) of cream cheese (fromage à tartiner). To give the cheeses a nice speadable texture, gradually add small amounts of mayonnaise, Greek yogurt, sour cream, or thick crème fraîche — or a combination of those ingredients. Season it with onion and/or garlic powder, hot red pepper sauce, and black pepper. Once you have the texture you want, dice up the flesh of a roasted red pepper and gently stir it into the mixture. Serve chilled pimento cheese on toasted bread, on crackers, or as a sandwich filling. It's also good semi-melted on a cheeseburger.