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How-to with Harmons: Charcuterie & Cheese Board

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Suggestions for a Charcuterie and Cheese Board

Harmons is known for its amazing Cheese Island – filled with everything you need to make a beautiful cheese or charcuterie platter that is sure to please all of you holiday guests.
At Harmons, we get a lot of questions about how to properly pair cheese and create a beautiful display. Here are some of our best tips and tricks from Harmons Chef Debbie Iverson:

• There are so many wonderful cheeses at Harmons Cheese Island that it can often be overwhelming. Do not be shy! Ask your Harmons Cheese Monger for their suggestions.
• Keep in mind that you will want to offer a variety of styles, textures and flavors. Make sure you use a combination of creamy and firm cheese.
• If serving hard cheeses, cut them into slices or cubes to make it easier for your guests.
• Make sure to have at least one cheese that people are familiar with. Here are some of the cheeses I like to use:
o Creamy: Brie or Boursin
o Aged: Gouda or Cheddar
o Firm: Gruyere or Parmigiano-Reggiano
o Crumbly: Chevre (Goat Cheese)
o Blue: Gorgonzola or Stilton

To complement cheese and meats, select a variety of crackers and breads. A baguette, different flavored crackers, and plain breadsticks are examples.
You can also add fresh and dried fruit, such as grapes, berries, pears, dried apricots, figs, and tart cherries; olives, jams, mustards, pickles and, one of my very favorites, nuts, such as Spanish Marcona almonds.
A slate platter makes an impressive display. Marble and wooden cheeseboards are also very pretty. Make sure whatever you use is food safe. Place a knife with each cheese to avoid mingling the flavors.
When thinking about quantity of cheese and meats to purchase, plan on about 2 ounces of cheese and 2 ounces of meat per person.
Remove cheese and meats from the refrigerator and unwrap about 2 hours prior to serving as cheese is best served at room temperature.

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