Have you ever wondered how to put together a lovely elegant cheeseboard? With the holidays here that means entertaining lots of family and friends and it’s a great time to try to make one for yourself. There is no need to be intimidated or scared when it comes to preparing one of these fabulous plates of goodness. Creativity makes for the best recipes (at least to me) Cheese plates make a wonderful centerpiece for the holidays, special gatherings or even for a night in with your love. SO grab a bottle of your favorite vino and make your very own cheese plate!
The first step for your cheeseboard is to select a few various types of cheeses that range in flavors from mild to pungent and in textures from soft to hard. If you asking yourself whether or not you have to go a gourmet market to find these cheeses the answer is no. Today most regular grocery stores have a gourmet cheese section offering a large selection of theses types of cheeses. For our cheese board we selected the following cheeses:
- Double cream brie – brie is a soft, mild and a very creamy cheese and pairs with just about everything on a cheeseboard.
- Dutch gouda – Is a wonderful cheese that is slightly sweet with a hint of nuttiness. A firm cheese and while still fairly mild you can find a wide variety of aged and smoked gouda cheeses today. The longer the cheese has been aged it developed a caramel or even a butterscotch after tastes and is quite pleasing on a cheeseboard.
- Danish Blue – This cheese is a very hard, crumbly cheese with a very strong pungent and distinct flavor. Some people are turned off by this cheese because they are unsure of how to use it or unfamiliar with other foods that it pairs with. Since it’s a very strong cheese it pairs well with apples, pears, honey and a variety of breads and crackers. This is an excellent cheese to crumble over a big green salad since you need such a small amount vs the flavor you get from it.
- And I even made a homemade raw cashew & herb cheese for me as I can’t eat dairy
The second step is to choose a variety of foods to pair with your cheeses. Typically the most common items to include would be:
- Fruit – such as fresh strawberries, sliced apples, grapes, figs, pears or dried apricots or anything else you want to add.
- Fresh herbs – We love to use fresh herbs such as rosemary or fresh basil to spruce up our cheeseboard. It not only adds great color to all of the cheeses and fruits but it’s also 100% edible.
- Other items you can add to your cheeseboard would be some flavored jams or honey. Here we used a fig jam from a local grocer and as well as fresh orange blossom honey. You may be surprised at how wonderful these simple condiments go so perfectly with the fruits and cheeses.
Add several types of wine for your guest to sip on while they enjoy this wonderful cheeseboard. Wines do not have to be expensive and again you can find them at your local grocer even Target caries a great selection of inexpensive wines these days. Again use the things that you like and you feel your guest would like.Some ideas to include are:
- Moscoato – is a very sweet and fruity wine and is commonly known as a dessert wine (AND personally one of my faves!)
- Chardonnay – is a very light, crisp wine that is still fairy sweet and very refreshing
- Pinot Nior – is a dry dark red or burgundy wine with fruity hints of blackberry or raspberry and not as sweet.
- Sauvignon Blanc – A is wine with a distinctive flavor. Still slightly sweet they can range in taste with notes of anything from citrus, herbal, fruity to even grassy flavors.
Now it’s time to assemble your cheeseboard. Colors, textures and height make this standout. Arrange the cheeses on the board filling it in with the fresh fruits, bread and crackers, jams or honey and decorate with some of the fresh herbs. The best thing about preparing a cheeseboard is that it takes minimal planning and almost no time to put together. Use your creativity and experiment with any food, cheeses and wine you choose while still impressing all of your guest.
Finally ENJOY your cheese board!!!!