(Cheese Board How-To: - CONT.)
the box when deciding how to present the cheeses. Make it creative! Arrange
small clean terra cotta tiles into a square or rectangle on the presentation
table. Line the outside of the tiles with spring annuals such as begonias,
fresh green moss, or grasses. Place the cheese directly on the tile and fill in
with an assortment of olives, fresh fruits, crackers, and breads. Savory
preserves, such as red pepper jelly and onion jam add excitement.
perfect cheese board is easy when you remember a few key steps:
1. Choose at least three to five varieties of
cheese for an impressive look and a range of tastes. Consider the mix of textures,
ages, and flavors, and choose at least one easy favorite – like
Castello-Rosenborg® Danish Brie – in case your guests aren’t quite as
adventurous as you are!
2. Serve soft and semi-soft cheese at room
temperature. If refrigerated, remove at least 30 minutes before your guests
arrive to bring out their full flavor.
3. Be creative: Arrange the cheeses on
interesting surfaces, such as a cutting boards or tiles. Consider arranging
them on a several smaller surfaces and then cluster the surfaces together in an
interesting presentation. Precut firmer cheeses into thin slices, chunks or
sticks. Have a different cheese cutter or knife for each cheese.
4. Use crackers, crisps, and breads along with
fresh sliced fruits, such as apples or pears, for color and visual texture. Decorate
the platter with whole bunches of grapes and strawberries, adding touches of
green with lemon leaves, ivy, or fern.
How can you find new cheese types and flavors? Cheesemongers
are a great resource. Here are the cheese groups they can help
1. Fresh Cheeses: Ricotta and
2. Soft-Ripened: edible rinds, smooth texture,
easy to spread and melt at low temperatures. Try Saga® Blue Brie, Camembert,
3. Semi-Soft: cheeses that are both ripe
and unripe, yellow or white in color, mild to sharp, that melt with medium
heat. Dofino® Havarti or mozzarella
4. Firm: ripened and aged, salty and
nutty taste, either smooth or crumbly texture. Dofino® Gouda, Swiss, Castello-Rosenborg® Blue, or your
5. Hard: ripened and aged, hard rind and
hard, granular texture. Parmesan, Asiago, or Romano