Have you seen pictures of irresistible cheese platters that leave your mouth watering?
While they look absolutely delicious, they also look like exquisite pieces of art – like a platter designed perfectly to put on display.
Whether you’re hosting a dinner or a wine and cheese party, putting together a cheese platter is quite simple. Besides, it involves no cooking, making it a go-to party food option.
Want to assemble your own cheese platter? This article will guide you through the steps to have your very own signature cheese platter.
Step 1: Select the Cheese
The first, most crucial step in setting a cheese platter is picking the right variety of cheese. Ideally, you would want a mix of textures and flavours on your board. An excellent way to strike the right balance is by selecting 3-5 types of cheeses.
To simplify this further, ensure that you pick at least one cheese from each category:
- Firm / Semi-Firm – Your options include white cheddar, Edam, Gruyere, Gouda, and the like.
- Soft / Spreadable – Best options include Brie, soft goat’s cheese, or even Camembert.
- Experimental – Something that you would not choose commonly, such as Blue Cheese, Stilton, or even Gorgonzola, that has a distinctive smell.
This list contains cheeses you can readily find at any grocery or cheese store close to your home.
For those new to assembling a cheese platter, you can avoid the experimental cheese. It is better to play it safe.
Tip: Remember to remove the cheese from the refrigerator at least half an hour before assembling the board. The key is to serve the cheese at room temperature.
Step 2: Pre-Slice the Cheese or Not
Depending on your preference, the next step involves deciding whether or not to slice your cheese before serving.
To add to the visual aesthetics of the platter, it is better to pre-slice the cheeses into multiple shapes. Perfectly aligned pieces of cheese arranged in a specific order truly enhance the board’s beauty.
The other option is to place cheese knives while serving the board. You can let the house guests slice pieces of their preferred sizes for themselves.
Step 3: Add Other Condiments
There are endless options of condiments to add to your cheese boards. So, the easy way to go about this is to select the food categories you want on the board. Another less convenient option is selecting what individual condiments you wish to add to the board.
Here is a list of categories you can include to enhance your cheese platters:
- Crunchy – Includes nuts, crackers, breadsticks, seeds, pita chips, bagel crisps, and basically anything that has a crunch to it.
- Meats/Salts – Salami, sausages, marinated artichokes, vegetables, olives, and pickles make great pairing options.
- Sweet – Although unusual, you can pair dried apricots, chocolate-dipped almonds, raisins, and other sweet items.
- Fruits – A standard component of cheese boards, you can consider adding thinly sliced pears, apples, oranges, grapes, strawberries, cherries, and persimmon.
- Condiments – To add some flavour to your board, mustard, honey, salsa, jam, and pesto make great options.
Once you make the tough decision of selecting the cheeses and condiments, it is time to assemble the items.
Lay down the platter and start by placing the bigger items like cheese first. Follow that up with adding the bigger condiments like meat and sliced fruits. In the final step, fill any gaps with smaller condiments like nuts or grapes.
Finally, you have a beautiful platter waiting to be dug in by your guests!
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