Crafting a Cheese Board with The Farm at Doe Run
With holiday entertaining season in full swing, no party is complete without a well-appointed cheese board. We asked our longtime friends and local cheese-making extraordinaires from The Farm at Doe Run to share their tips for serving up a spread that’s sure to be a cheesemonger’s delight. Doe Run’s artisan cheeses are a favorite in our cafés, with each block hand-crafted on-site at the farm in Unionville, Pennsylvania. They took a moment away from the creamery to give us the following list of cheese board do’s and don’ts.
1. Always pull your semi-soft, semi-hard, and hard cheeses from the refrigerator and remove them from their wrapping 20-30 minutes prior to your guests’ arrival. This allows the cheese to reach room temperature for optimal flavor.
2. You should always leave the rind on your cheeses, allowing guests the opportunity to taste the rind as the cheesemaker intended.
3. Never cube artisanal cheese. Instead, cut long triangles or small wedges of a bloomy rind so that your guests receive the proper rind-to-paste ratio.
4. Design your cheese board like a road map for your guests. Make sure to start with your milder cheeses up front or to the left of your board, then lead into a nice, firm variety, followed by a bolder, washed rind. Finish up with something salty, like a blue cheese.
5. Cheese knives are important! There are knives designed for every type of cheese, but that doesn’t mean you need to have them all. It’s good to have a soft cheese knife for more spreadable varieties, and a hard cheese knife for chopping firmer cheeses. A cheeseboard and tools can make a great conversation piece – by placing your knives near each designated block of cheese, you create an interactive experience for your guests. This also helps eliminate waste, since guests are able to cut what size piece they would like to try.
6. Cheese signs are a must! Be sure to list information such as the name of the cheese, type of milk, whether it is raw or pasteurized, and the name of the local farm that produced it. Spread that local love!
7. Ask your local beekeeper for some fresh honeycomb to put on the side of your cheese board as a seasonal pairing that also adds visual flourish.
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Cool tips!Thanks... I still have to learn more about cheese :))