Preparing a cheese board at home as a snack or on the occasion of a meeting with friends is always pleasant. Being able to feast discovering new varieties and experiences.
There is a great variety of cheeses, of forms of textures, aromas and flavors. What is the best choice? How to accompany our cheese board? There is no single answer, but we can tell you what elements to put together and accompany it to make your meeting a success.
Define the type of cheese board
Before starting to buy our ingredients it is important to define the type of meeting we are planning to organize, it is not the same to prepare a cheese board for a special tasting at one before dinner.
Select cheeses from the main variables:
Consider about 80-100 grams if it is a dessert table or if it is a full menu use up to 175-200 grams if cheeses will be the main protagonist of lunch or dinner.
- Animal from which the milk comes: goat, sheep, cow, buffalo or mixture.
- Texture: hard, semi-hard, soft, blue, spreadable paste.
- Type of bark: washed, moldy, pressed, with herbs or spices.
- Maturation: soft cheese, semi-cured, cured, aged.
- Intensity: fresh, sweet, pronounced, strong or very strong.
Select the types of cheeses
You can choose from 5 to 8 types of cheeses, using more than 11 varieties can be considered excessive and deplete.
Cheddar, Gouda goat, Swiss, etc.
Brie, Camembert, Bliss Constant, etc.
Gruyere, Jarlesberg, Monterey Jack, Provolone, etc.
Stilton, Gorgonzola, etc.
A selection of accompaniments can complete the lunch or dinner and leave us totally satisfied.
Bread cannot be missing in your cheese board. You can combine different types of breads, toasts and crackers (white, whole grain, with cereals or raisins. Avoid using what you already have in the pantry.
It is recommended that bread or cookies be simple. Opt for baguette slices, bread sticks or toast. In the case of cookies try to have a very light flavor so that they highlight the flavor of meats and cheeses.
Nuts such as nuts, hazelnuts, almonds, dates, raisins or dried apricots will enhance the flavor of your cheeses and give them a crispy touch.
Sweet fruits bring a great color and a fresh touch to your cheese board. Green or red grapes, apples, raisins or dehydrated fig perfectly match cheese.
Using fruits are perfect for a dessert cheese board.
Honey, jam, sweet sauces and quince
The acid and dairy taste of cheese combines particularly well with these sweet flavors. They are ideal to combine with blue cheeses, as they help to enhance their flavor and the contrast they offer is very pleasant to the palate. They also go very well for fresh cheeses, spreads or goat cheeses.
Add a little sweetness to your table, you can accompany with a little honey or jelly.
If you are going to serve your table as an appetizer or as a main course, accompany it with a piece of ham or salami.
Complement your cheese board with a variety of pates of various flavors.
Olives and pickles
They give a nice touch of color and flavor. They provide a contrast to meat and cheese. Think of them as a palate cleanser. Fine and bitter notes cut through the richness of the other accompaniments.
How to present your cheese board
The way to present the cheeses is also important, you must cut them into small triangles or slices and place them starting from the softest to the strongest if you are serving the cheese board as a dish. Blue cheeses are the strongest on the plate, followed by washed crust cheeses.
If the cheeses are very soft or spreadable, do not put them on bread, serve them in tubs or small containers. As for very mature subjects, thinner cuts are recommended, thus fat and aromatic potency not too strong. Other hard cheeses, such as Parmigiano reggiano, will have to be served in flakes or irregular pieces.
Keep the cheeses inside the plate, otherwise it will look messy. The most appropriate is to use a good wooden board, ensuring that it is beautiful and well preserved and clean.
Always let your cheeses temper, at least one hour. If it is very hot and we have a lot of humidity, half an hour in advance may be enough. Look for a service temperature of about 16-18ºC.
Wine is always a good choice to accompany your cheese board. Soft cheeses match best with fresh, white and rosé wines and the strongest and cured cheeses with red and full-bodied wines. Blue cheeses are well accompanied by cider and sweet wines
It presents a varied cheese board and rich in options, do not saturate it or decorate it in excess. Bon Appetite