Quick and Easy Honey + Cheese Plate For Your Next Celebration
This cheese plate pairs well with honey *AND* your crazy aunt Bertha. Perfect for all of the celebrations coming up this holiday season. Our in-house cheese connoisseur, Big C, gave us his list of cheeses that go well with raw, local honey. Starting clockwise from the bottom, from mild to strong:
- Chèvre goat cheese with walnuts and honey sprinkled on top
- Parmigiano Reggiano
- Saint-André triple creme
- Bleu cheese (Roquefort)
- and a fifth cheese that was just too ugly to put on the plate was Brebiroussse d'argental.
Cheese plates are gourmet, but don't have to have a gourmet price tag. We bargain shop at Trader Joe's (Saint André + Chèvre goat cheese), our local Bay Area grocer The Milk Pail Market (Brebirousse d'Argental + Parmigiano Reggiano)... and surprise, Grocery Outlet (Roquefort bleu cheese)
BIG C'S ADVICE FOR A CHEESE PLATE
// Buy Parmigiano Reggiano, not generic parmesan, because you want those crunchy salt crystals that mix well with honey.
// Blue cheeses like Roquefort or gorgonzola taste delicious with honey and pecans. We were out of pecans for the photo shoot.
// "I like mixing the chèvre with the honey, but I'm the kind of kid that stirs up all my cheese and croutons into my soup until it's mush. I eat stuff like that."
HOW TO SERVE
// Start from mild cheeses to stronger ones so your tastebuds aren't overpowered.
// Let your cheese come to room temperature an hour before serving. This allows the flavors and textures to develop.
// Try the cheese by themselves and add honey to test whether you like the combination of flavors.
// Mix different cheese teXtures (hard, soft, crumbly, creamy) when putting together a cheese plate.
// Add nuts & fruit for vegan guests. My sister is vegan so she can still enjoy the toasted nuts, honey, crackers, and the apples we'll be serving.
BIG C = CHEESE CONNOISSEUR
How did a teenager end up learning about cheese? It started when he was a toddler, and our Sunday shopping was run like clockwork. Mr. T and I would synchronize our watches, split the grocery list down the middle, and frantically dash off and grab our groceries in 5 minutes.
Where was our 1-year old? Sitting in the corner of the L-shaped Milk Pail Market grocery story. This spot was perfect because 1) We could both see him from opposite ends of the store and 2) It's where the magical Chef Jamie was sampling 3-5 cheese specials for the week. She had toddler-sized cheese cubes! Stories fo cheese from the exotic Swiss alps and French fields! It was like story time with snacks and we were such grateful first-time parents. We adored Jamie.
When it was time to pay for everything, Big C chose a cheese with the best story, and Jamie cut off a small block for him to take home with a baguette. Groceries done, no meltdown! We were winning at parenting!
Fast forward 3 years later, one Sunday we find our favorite chef is no longer at Milkpail Market and our hyper preschooler cannot be contained by a 3-point stroller harness. We were *not* winning at parenting. So I quickly invested a game: choose a cheese from the sale section... aaaaaaand count to 500. Ready, set, go!
When I came back, I said, "Oooh, what a pretty label!" And he said, "It's a goat, cow, and sheep cheese from Italy." I thought all these years he was snacking, but he was making a mental note of all his favorite cheeses. And that's when we realized Big C had become our in-house cheese expert. I also realized he counted to 500 pretty darn fast.