Cheese Platter 101
A cheese platter is always a classy dish to bring to a party. Not only is cheese delicious and loved by all, but it’s always in season. You can try something new, mix and match flavor profiles and it can convert a party into a tasting experience with different combinations of flavors, textures and sides.
Before you create your cheese platter, check out these useful websites and tips. They will save you time, and make you look like a cheese expert at your next party!
The Perfect Cheese Platter, from Real Simple offers a great rundown on how to build a cheese platter that would impress any guest. Here is a summary of their tips:
Cheese platters should be self-guided. Let guests create their own experience by offering a variety of….
• textures (soft cheese, hard cheeses, blue, etc.)
• flavors (via type of milk used, i.e. cow, goat, sheep)
• sides that can be mixed/matched – sweet, salty, variety of breads, etc.
A few years back Rachel Ray aired a great segment on The Rachel Ray Show that discussed tips and tricks for making a great holiday cheese platter. Click here to watch the full video, but one of the tips that jumped out at me is to start your platter with a cheese that is familiar to your guests before you introduce more exotic cheeses they might not have tried before. Most guests pallets will be familiar with an aged-cheddar, so why not start with something like Tillamook’s Vintage White Extra Sharp Cheddar (aged naturally for 2 years) or if you would rather have yellow cheddar, check out Tillamook’s Special Reserve Extra Sharp Cheddar (aged naturally for 15 months).
And one final tip….share a few of your favorite recipes that use the cheeses you’re offering alongside your cheese platter to inspire cooking (and future parties!) Guest will enjoy being able to fully experience the flavor and texture of each cheese, and imagine how it would complement the dishes you are suggesting. If you’re offering aged cheddars, considering sharing these recipes from some of Tillamook’s favorite chefs:
~ Mary of the Tillamook Team
Photo: marcellathecheesemonger.com (Creative Commons)