Breaking up your regularly scheduled cookie content to bring you a cheese plate! I know, it’s been much too long. But if you need a last-minute NYE appetizer, here is something you can throw together in just a few minutes. Perfect for next Christmas too!
If you’re intimidated by putting together a cheese board, don’t be. Everyone loves snacking, and putting out a platter with such a variety means there has to be something for everyone there.
The other nice thing about cheese boards is that it really doesn’t matter what they look like. If you just cut up some nice cheese and put it on a plate with some crackers, you’re good! What matters is the quality of what you’re serving. If you do want to make your board visually beautiful, here are some tips:
Place contrasting colors, textures, and shapes next to each other. Tans and yellows in crackers and cheeses look really nice next to reds and pinks of cured meats and fruit. This makes your board very eye catching and appealing – really draws people in and makes you look like a pro. It’s also just fine to add bowls filled with jams, honeys, and other dips throughout the board, and play with layering too – should I stack or fan cheese slices? Intersperse garnishes here or there?
Again, quality of ingredients is really important. So pick good cheeses (probably not Kraft) and meats, and have some variety too. A nice rule of thumb for a cheese board this size (about 8” x 12”) is to have 3 cheeses, one super soft (like goat or brie), one kind of medium hard (cheddars, goudas), and one crumbly hard cheese (blue cheese, manchego, gruyere, parm).
Once you lay the first thing on your board, it is just really fun to let your creativity take over and make something beautiful!
For this board specifically, I picked some of my favorite ingredients and tried to keep things in more of a winter theme – for example, I feel like smoked gouda is really nice this time of year because it is kind of warming. Also, pomegranates and pears are super in season right now, so they made my board too. On another hand, I love prosciutto and goat cheese all times of year, so those are featured (and will be in most of my boards!).
Finally, a special shout out to Trader Joe’s Dark Russet Potato Chips, featured in the tip top left corner of my board above the pomegranate – they’re literally burnt potato chips and I’ve never tasted anything better!
All that to say, here is a list of what’s featured on this particular board:
Cheeses: Young Manchego, Smoked Gouda, and Blueberry Goat Cheese
Meats: Prosciutto, Calabrese Salami
Crackers: Carr’s Water Crackers, La Panzanella Mini Original Croccantini crackers, Trader Joe’s Dark Russet Potato Chips
Fruits: Bartlett pears, pomegranates
Other: Shelled pistachios, honey, rosemary sprigs (for garnish)
In the “recipe” below I included the amounts of what I used to make the exact board you see here. But please use your favorite cheeses, meats, and accoutrements, with as much or as little as desired. Get to it!
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4 (ish)
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