When it comes to easy entertaining, nothing beats a simple cheese board. I like to keep all the elements either sweet or savoury, depending on whether we’ll be enjoying it after dinner or before. A sampling of artisan cheeses from a specialty shop is a wonderful treat, but for last-minute, budget-friendly hosting, I have a few guidelines for putting together a lovely platter with varied flavours and textures from the grocery store.
1. Danish feta; 2. New Zealand aged cheddar; 3. Tasmanian double brie - I like to serve a selection of foreign and local cheeses: one hard, one soft, and one goat or sheepsmilk cheese. (Blue is the logical fourth choice, but not my personal favourite!)
6. Cracked pepper water crackers 7. Nairns fine milled oat cakes (gluten free) 8. Sesame seed water crackers - I also like to serve a selection of biscuits with different flavours and textures: one quite plan, one a little spicy, and one oaty.
4. Spiced sunflower kernels from the Wednesday CBD markets; 5. Marinated olives from the deli counter; 9. Red capsicum dip - I always add a few nibbles to accompany the cheeses and biscuits to add colour and give guests who aren’t mad for cheese other options.
Keep lots of replenishments on hand – a cheese board should always look plentiful!