In Which We Don’t Cook

Every so often, you just don’t want to cook. (Ok, I won’t speak for you – WE just don’t want to cook.) So, what do you do? You do what your parents (and by your parents I mean my parents) taught you – you crack open a bottle of wine, chop up a baguette, whip out some cheese, and put together a wine and cheese dinner. Trust me. That’s what you do.
A (basically) no-cook dinner.

I’ve read quite a few “guides” on how to put together a great, balanced, crowd-pleasing cheese platter. What I’ve walked away with are these few rules (my memory has never been great):

1. Use a mix of soft and hard cheeses, as well as milder and sharp/smelly cheeses, depending on your taste. Here, we had St. Andre (soft), Trader Joe’s Unexpected Cheddar (semi-hard, very tasty – like a cheddar-parmesan cross), and Goat’s Milk Gouda (semi-hard).

2. Good bread or crackers (both if you’re fancy) – we used the half-baked Trader Joe’s loaf, which you bake right before eating, making it all warm and soft and lovely.

3. Serve a variety of accompaniments (fruit, meats, preserves) – this is what makes your cheese plate extra-gourmet. We used blueberry preserves, sliced pear, and pepperoni. A strange assortment, perhaps, but it allowed for some fun cheese combos!

And there you have it – the three (fairly intuitive) rules of the cheese plate, from a completely unqualified person’s perspective! Enjoy…

Our spread.

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