Here are some tips (via a cup of jo) on creating the perfect cheese plate.
- When you invite friends over, buy one ounce per person per cheese; and stick to five to six cheeses total.
- Choose a fun variety of cheeses: different textures, countries, and all three milk types (goat, sheep, cow).
- Serve all the cheeses on one big board. You want your guests to start with the mildest and work up to the strongest, so place the cheeses in "clock order"--12 o'clock being the mildest and 11 o'clock being the strongest.
- Take the cheese out of the fridge at least an hour before serving. Cheese should be eaten at room temperature, when it's at its full flavor and texture.
- Put out a few different knives. Goat and blue cheeses crumble if you use a regular knife, so cheese wires are the best thing to use--if you don't have one, you can use dental floss! Softer cheeses work best with a butter knife. Harder cheeses, like parmesan, are good with a triangle-shaped knife. Cut circular cheeses in wedges, like a pizza.
- If you have leftovers, don't store the cheese in Saran Wrap, which will make the cheese sweat and leave a plastic-y taste. Cheese is living and needs to breathe, so wrap it in parchment or wax paper, and keep it in the most humid part of the fridge (usually the vegetable drawer).
You can find out more about the cheeses pictured above on Jo's blog here.
Enjoy your weekend!