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