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How to make the perfect charcuterie board

Putting a cheeseboard together may seem intimidating at first but we have a step-by-step guide to take you in the right direction. We’ve got the perfect guide to a charcuterie board everyone will drool over! 

Always keep in mind…  

  • Price range. Set a budget and stick to it. 
  • Quality trumps quantity. Buy fewer products of higher quality. 
  • Balance of flavours. Pick at least one cheese from each category to create variety in flavour and colour. 
  • Add extras. Jams, preserves, nuts and fruits served in little bowls will help create breaks in your cheeseboard. 

Choice of cheese  

Look at buying 3-5 cheeses spread across these categories:  

  • Firm: Manchego, Edam, Gouda 
  • Soft: Brie, Camembert, goat’s cheese 
  • Aged: mature Cheddar or Parmesan 
  • Blue cheese: Stilton or Gorgonzola 

If your budget doesn’t allow for five, opt for only three cheeses: one soft, one hard and one aged or blue. This way you accommodate all palates and preferences.  

Also read: How to level up your toasted-cheese game 

Additional elements 

Buy an assortment of produce for flavour and pops of flavour, for example:  

  • Cold meats: Prosciutto, salami, ham 
  • Vegetables: olives, celery, peppers, raw or marinated vegetables, pickles 
  • Crunch and carbs: nuts, crackers, chips , breadsticks, pita 
  • Sweet: dried fruits, chocolate squares 
  • Fruits: grapes, cherries, apples, strawberries, figs 
  • Condiments: mustards, chutneys, honey, jams and preserves 
  • Garnishes: herbs, edible flowers 

How to assemble  

  1. Find a wooden, marble or ceramic board that all your elements can easily fit and stay on. 
  2. Cheeses go first: space them evenly around the board. 
  3. Go ahead with the salty elements, like cold meats, nuts and olives. 
  4. Next add fruits, followed by the crackers and bread bits. 
  5. Place condiments into small serving bowls and add these to your board. 
  6. Add extra sweet nibbles like grapes, figs or chocolate as fillers to close gaps on your board. 
  7. Finish off with pretty garnishes like herbs and edible flowers or serving utensils like cheese knives, spoons or salt and pepper shakers.

Also read: Top tips to plan a menu for your next dinner party

Words: Sjaan van der Ploeg

Photography: Fresh Living Magazine


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