Or how to make your own Channing and The Cheese Plate #channingandthecheeseplate
I love cheese. Cheese is actually the largest food group in my personal food pyramid. If you follow me on Instagram, then you know I love a good cheese plate enjoyed at home or on a hike and everywhere in between.
When I started taking my cheese plates to the next level it wasn’t about getting fancier cheese, it was about finding what I like to call accessible cheeses. Delicious cheese you can buy just about anywhere. Since about half of my cheese plates are enjoyed in the “wild” aka not near a cheese shop, I am left shopping at the nearest grocery store for cheese. And honestly that is not a bad thing… the below cheeses I have found at grocery stores all over the country. Their price point won’t break the bank and everyone will ask “Where did you get this cheese!?!”
BellaVitano – I love you and I know you love me too. BellaVitano, by Sartori Cheese out of Wisconsin, is hands down one of the best cheese I have ever eaten. Other would agree as their BellVitanos have literally won dozens of awards. This cheese comes in a variety of “flavors” by adding different rinds to the cheese. I am partial to the Merlot but really all of them are divine. What does it taste like? Heaven! A parmesan flavored start with a buttery finish. I am obsessed with this Sartori Cheese.
President Tripple Cream Brie – You can never go wrong with a Brie and all of its creamy goodness. Stores seem to carry a wide variety but I typically grab a round of President Brie. When creating a cheese plate I try to have a variety of cheeses and textures. Of all the creamy cheeses, Brie is always a crowd pleaser. Double-Cream or Tripple-Cream means more butterfat in the dry mixture of the cheese. To me, the creamier the better so Tripple-Cream all the way.
Rembrandt Extra Aged Gouda – Gouda is cow’s milk cheese originally made in The Netherlands. Depending on its age, Gouda cheese can have a variety of flavors. There is a MAJOR difference between smoked Gouda and the older, extra aged Gouda. I’m not really a fan of smoked Gouda but this Dutch Extra Aged Gouda is divine. This award winning hard cheese is aged for a year has a great honey/butterscotch flavor with a soft cheese finish. Delishhh with some fig jam, too.
Crackers – When it comes to crackers I reach for the entertainment pack. A good bang for your buck plus I prefer a sturdier cracker with my cheeses. A fresh loaf of french bread is a great supplement, or addition as well.
Dalmatia Fig Spread – This stuff is crack. Add a dollop to any cheese and this takes it to the next level. I prefer the regular fig jam but have also tried Fig with Tangerine. This spread is also money on a grilled cheese.
Prosciutto – Prosciutto is my favorite cured meat closely followed by a good Genoa Salami. While totally not necessary for my cheese plates a great meat gives the plate more flavor, texture and color. Plus, it’s like making tiny little sandwiches. Cracker, fig jam, yummy cheese and Prosciutto bites? Yes, please. Primo Taglio, Safeway’s brand of Premium meats and cheeses, are very reasonably priced. You can find a variety of current meats and salamis near the cheese/pre-made food section in any grocery store.
The Board & Knives – I have a variety of boards that I rotate between using. Brooklyn Slate makes beautiful slate boards in a variety of sizes, like the one pictured bellow. These metal knives are from Crate & Barrel but I also have a wooden set from World Market. For more decorative boards knives check out Williams-Sonoma, Neiman Marcus & Anthropologie.
You may read a lot of rules about creating a good cheese board. Rules like never user more than three cheese or you might overwelm your palate. Or always choose cheese made from different kinds of milk (cow, goat or sheep) but really… just pick cheeses that you love. I love hard cheeses so I typically fill my plates with those. Harder cheese also happen to travel better than soft cheeses. My one personal rule is to have a variety of texture and colors, ya know for the Instagrams! But honestly, people are going to enjoy your cheese plate no matter what cheeses you serve!
The Cheese Board
The Cheese Knives
The Cheese You Can Buy Online (!!!)
I would love to see your cheese plates! Tag me on instagram @bluemountainbel Questions? Comments? Or Cheese recomendations? Comment, tweet or email me! Sign up for my weekly emails