Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Easy cheese platter ideas from author @AveryAames

Featured: smoked Gouda, sharp white Cheddar,
and sharp orange Cheddar.
HAPPY ALMOST NEW YEAR!!!! Will you be partying? Going out of having people in? No matter what, you want easy, don't you? Think buffet. Think finger food. And say cheese!  [I'm in cheese mood right now. I've got a new Cheese Shop Mystery #7 FOR CHEDDAR OR WORSE to be released in 4 weeks. Count 'em. 4!] So cheese is on my mind.

The ease of a cheese platter is something so wonderful. All it takes is your own creativity, a great plate, some good cheese.

Think variety when you're putting together a cheese platter. Variety of color (orange, white, yellow, red rims).  Variety of texture (creamy, hard, hole-y, gritty). Variety of shapes (round, square, triangles, cubes).

And then think what you want the accompaniment to be: sweet, savory, salty. 

There is NO right or wrong. 

If you have a cheese monger to go to, great. Ask her for advice. If you don't, go to the store and pick with your eyes. Choose what appeals to you. 

By the way, do not be a cheese snob. Let's face it, sometimes budget is an issue. There are some great Cheddars, Swiss, and Monterey Jack cheeses that are extremely reasonable in price. 

If you want to, add a label or two to your cheeses, but it's not necessary so long as you remember what they are. However, make sure, if you do have guests, that you taste the cheeses first so you can tell them what each cheese tastes like.  

And - this is just from me - remember to consider your gluten-free guests. They can probably eat the cheese, but not the crackers (unless you have gluten-free), so I like to keep them separate. (*see topmost photo)

If you have lactose-intolerant friends, do your best to have other choices for their snacks, but hard cheeses are usually "good" for an intolerant person, in limited amounts.

And get this, there are even vegan cheeses! I've not tried any (sorry to say) but I hear popular brands include: Cheezly, Daiya, Teese, and Tofutti. 

Whatever you do, enjoy. Have a glass of wine (or champagne or water, both of which go with all cheese) and savor the delight!!
Yes, that's chocolate paired with cheese!

Also, remember, you can always find other appetizers and platters I've shared on MLK on my website: APPETIZERS.

Savor the mystery and say cheese!

Daryl Wood Gerber aka Avery Aames
Tasty ~ Zesty ~ Dangerous!

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  1. I love creating delicious cheese platters for my little friendly gatherings. Often I will provide a selection of cheeses, always including a Stilton, with water crackers or tiny toasts, artisan olives, chutneys, slices of pickles eggs, maybe fruits, and some sliced meats. I always include chilled wines or a nice red.

  2. I didn't realize there were vegan cheeses! Not sure if I really want to try any (vegan cheeses). Thank you for all of the tips.

    1. Jen, I knew they were out there, but I simply haven't tried one yet. I will soon.

      ~Daryl / Avery

  3. I didn't think about gluten and crackers. That was silly of me. I'm glad you mentioned it. I will be more attentive to others needs. Can't wait For Cheddar or Worse!!!

    1. You know what's interesting? People don't realize but I can't use the same jar of jam as other people because of "double-dipping" when spreading jam on bread. It's the little things that seem to get-cha! :)

      ~Daryl / Avery

    2. A very important point that people who aren't challenged by gluten would probably not think about.

  4. I just had sharp cheddar with hummus on sesame crackers for brunch.
    The possibilities are limitless and delicious.

    Wishing you all a happy, healthy, peace-filled new year.

    1. Yummy brunch! Good for you! And same to you re: a great new year!!!

      ~Daryl / Avery

  5. What beautifully displayed cheese plates, Daryl! I want to be at that party.



  6. I love a simple plate of cheese, crackers, and fruit… One of my absolute favorite appetizers! My cheese palate is very basic this week, I received a jar of red pepper jelly for Christmas and I've just been putting it on crackers with cream cheese… Not fancy at all, and probably not even a real cheese, but very yummy! My go to favorite cheese is a triple cream brie, but I really would like to experiment more I don't like blue cheese, or anything with a mushroom flavor, but I'm game to try just about anything else! Happy New Year! :-)

  7. We've been partying all week with some of our kids and grandkids here. Friday we will be celebrating my mom's birthday so another party. I think I need some quiet time...

    Happy New Year! I will be reading your cheese shop books in the new year.