12 Unique Ingredients to Elevate Your Cheese Platter
A beautiful board piled high with several types of cheese, delicious spreads, salty crackers, and sweet dried fruit is an easy and crowd-pleasing appetizer, so why not put one together for your holiday party? Start by selecting a couple of different cheeses: one creamy, one hard, maybe a blue? Pick the cheese that you love and get creative: Choose cheeses that are different types of milk (a cow’s milk cheddar and a goat’s milk gouda) or from different regions (a Spanish manchego and French brillat-savarin). Place the cheese on a marble platter and style it with lots of tasty accoutrements.
To encourage you to think outside the box and ensure that your cheese platter is an excellent success, here are 12 unique ingredients that will take your cheese plate to a whole new level.
Olli Salumeria Spanish Chorizo ($40)
I spent many years searching for an American-made chorizo that is authentic to the flavors of Spain. I only recently found it in Olli Salumeria’s traditional pimenton de la vera chorizo. Eating a slice of the Virginia-based company’s chorizo is like tasting a scrumptious bite of Spain.
Wonderful Pistachios Roasted and Salted No Shells Pistachios 24 Ounce Bag ($29)
Walnuts, almonds, pecans—you could use any nut on your cheese board, but I like to use pistachios because they feel more celebratory.
Trader Joe's Orange Dried Cranberries ($8)
Dried fruit is a must for a cheese plate, and I prefer smaller pieces like dried cranberries or cherries to larger items like apricots. Trader Joe’s orange dried cranberries are a recent find that I can’t get enough of. They are juicy, sweet, and so easy to pop in your mouth, like candy!
Bubbies Pickles, Bread & Butter, 33 oz ($25)
Including a pickled ingredient on your cheese plate will show your guests that you are a savvy foodie. Pickles are all the rage right now! A Polish friend who has amazing taste in food introduced me to Bubbies pickles a little over a year ago. They are the best pickles I’ve ever tasted, and I always have a jar in my fridge.
How do you jazz up your cheese plate?