I LOVE cheese. No really, I LOVE it. This is not an exaggeration. Some have said that I am slightly obsessed by it. In fact, I would rather live in a world without chocolate than in a world without cheese. I am THAT serious about my cheese. When I have friends over, I like to serve them what I like to call the perfect cheese platter. Are you THAT serious about cheese too or/and do you want to know how to arrange the (my) perfect cheese platter? Read on!
The Best Cheese Platter is a Varied Cheese Platter
To keep your selection interesting, choose cheeses with different textures and flavours. Serve at least 3-4 different cheeses when you have 4-8 guests. I usually serve a cheese plate with 5 different cheeses: 1 goat cheese, 1 semi-hard/hard cheese, 1 soft cheese, 1 blue cheese, and 1 smear-ripened cheese.
- Goat (or sheep): Valençay, Paille cru, Brin d’amour
- Semi-hard/hard cheeses: Gouda, Cheddar, Comté
- Soft cheeses: Brie de Meaux, Camembert de Normandie, Brillat-Savarin
- Blue cheeses: Gorgonzola, Stilton, Danish Blue, Blue d’Auvergne
- Smear-ripened cheeses: Munster (the French one), Port Salut, Taleggio, Reblochon
Make sure the cheeses are at room temperature when you serve them. Cold temperatures mute the flavour of the cheese. Also, soft cheeses spread better when they are at room temperature. Take your cheese selection out of the fridge at least 1 hour before serving!
Great Cheese Platter Accompaniments
Don’t forget the accompaniments! Your cheese platter is not complete without them. Include some bread, crackers, or a nice baguette. Add some fresh and dried fruit, such as grapes and apple slices. Pair strong cheeses with sweet jams or onion chutneys. Hard cheeses such as Gouda taste great with a dollop of mustard. Goat cheeses taste extra delicious with a drizzle of honey and chopped walnuts. I always like to add some extra party nibbles as well, such as prosciutto, salami, fuet and olives. Serve your cheeses and accompaniments on a wooden cutting board, for that extra wow factor.
Additional Cheese Platter Tips
- It’s quite handy to label your cheeses, so your guests know what’s what (keeps them from asking you all night).
Cut each cheese with a different knife, so the flavours don’t mingle.
Pre-cut some starting slices to prompt your guests to dive in. This way they also know the best way to cut the cheeses.
Are you serving strong cheeses? Serve a tasty dessert wine as well (Port for example).
Talking about strong cheeses…Don’t serve all strong cheeses. You might have some “beginner cheese” guests, who will prefer mild and creamy cheeses over stinky and runny cheeses.
What does your perfect cheese platter look like? Do you prefer mild cheeses over stinky cheeses? Do you LOVE cheese too? Let us know & leave a comment!
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