For a quick, nutritious, and delicious eat-with-your-hands dish option, look no further than a cheese and fruit platter. It’s not only visually appealing but also requires no cooking or preparation, making it ready in just 15 minutes. You can even prepare it in advance and serve it whenever you desire.
Cheese, besides being rich in protein and nutrients, is known as a “happiness food” due to its tryptophan content, which releases serotonin, the happiness hormone, promoting a better mood and state of mind.
Pairing the cheese with fresh, seasonal fruits like strawberries, blueberries, kiwi, papaya, and mandarin adds a burst of vitamin C, essential for skin care as it supports collagen synthesis and neutralizes free radicals caused by sun exposure.
The inclusion of red and orange fruits, high in beta-carotene, enhances the tan and protects the skin. Blueberries, in particular, are loaded with antioxidants like anthocyanins, guarding against premature aging and possessing anti-inflammatory properties, making them a superb superfood for reducing the risk of conditions such as arthritis and Alzheimer’s disease.
The key to a top-notch cheese and fruit platter lies in the variety of cheeses, from strong, aged options to milder, fresher varieties. Mixing cheeses made from different types of milk brings a wide range of flavors to cater to all taste buds.
In the suggested cheese and fruit platter, the vibrant colors and freshness of the fruits, mostly sourced from the Canary Islands, create a striking contrast. Nuts and breads add diverse textures to the ensemble. You can find all the necessary ingredients at your nearest Lidl Canarias supermarket.
In essence, assembling a cheese and fruit platter is incredibly simple. Just cut the ingredients into different shapes, combine them creatively, and arrange them on the platter in a harmonious and visually appealing manner. Your enticing platter will be a feast for the eyes and delight for the taste buds.
INGREDIENTS OF THE CHEESE AND FRUIT PLATTER
Sheep’s cheese with mojo picon
Sheep cheese with truffle
Aged mixed cheese with Pedro Ximenez
Fresh fresh blended cheese
Fresh fresh goat’s cheese
HOW TO MAKE THE CHEESE AND FRUIT PLATTER
Ideas for cutting the cheeses
Begin by cutting the mojo picón sheep’s cheese into wedges. Arrange the wedges in parallel with opposite ends, alternating the direction (left and right) until all the wedges are arranged on the serving platter.
Next, cut the sheep’s cheese with truffle into wedges and place them in a row, slightly overlapping one wedge on top of the other. Arrange these wedges on the platter.
For the aged Pedro Ximénez cheese, cut it into approximately 1 cm thick cubes, and then arrange them on the platter.
Cut the blended fresh cheese into 1 cm thick cubes and add them to the platterin an organized arrangement.
Lastly, for the fresh goat’s cheese, cut 1/4 of the cheese into triangular portions and serve the remaining whole cheese on the platter alongside the portions.
How to cut the fruit
Using a pastry cutter, create papaya balls and serve them in a small bowl, which you’ll then place on the platter.
For the kiwifruit, make zigzag cuts around the middle, resulting in two halves with zigzag shapes on the surface. Arrange the kiwifruit on the platter.
Peel the mandarin and separate the segments before arranging them on the platter.
Halve the strawberries lengthwise and place them on the platter.
Next, add the blueberries to the platter.
Arrange the walnuts on the platter, ensuring they cover any visible gaps.
Finally, finish by artfully arranging breadcrumbs on some of the ends of the platter.
OTHER INGREDIENTS TO USE ON YOUR CHEESE PLATTERS
In this recipe, we have chosen a simple yet visually appealing cheese platter accompanied by fresh fruit. However, there are countless other cheese varieties, ingredients, and accompaniments you can consider for your cheese platters.
Cheese Varieties: You have the freedom to include as many cheese varieties as desired, adapting them to the size of your cheese platter. Opt for cheeses with diverse textures, intensities, aromas, curing levels, and types of milk, such as cow, goat, sheep, or mixed. Experiment with cured, semi-cured, soft, blue, smoked, spreadable, or fresh cheeses.
Cold Meats and Sausages: Enhance your cheese platter by incorporating cold meats and sausages like Serrano ham, chorizo, salami, mortadella, cured pork loin, cooked ham, or turkey breast. Slice or cube these sausages and arrange them in an appealing and colorful manner to create a harmonious display.
Bread: Complement your cheeses with various bread types, such as soft-crumb loaves, rolls, or round loaves. Consider using different flours like wheat, spelt, rye, or millet bread. Add a crunchy element by including toasted breads like colines, piquitos, regañás, crackers, or crispbreads.
Nuts and Dried Fruit: Fill in any empty spaces on your platter or highlight nuts by offering a wide variety of walnuts, almonds, pistachios, hazelnuts, cashews, or peanuts.
Pickles: Pickles can also make a delightful addition to your cheese platter, such as olives, gherkins, onions, banderillas, and capers. If possible, consider making homemade pickles for a unique touch, and serve them in individual bowls to avoid dampening other ingredients.
Fresh Fruit: While our cheese and fruit platter includes a variety of fresh Canarian and seasonal fruits, you can customize them according to flavor, seasonality, and taste preferences. For instance, sweet fruits like grapes, figs, papaya, and mango can complement and contrast with more intensely flavored cheeses, while acidic and fresh fruits like strawberries, blueberries, mandarins, apples, and pears help cleanse the palate between cheeses, enhancing their distinct flavors.
Dried Fruits: For a dessert-style cheese platter, consider incorporating dried fruits such as dates, sultanas, prunes, dried apricots, or dried cranberries to provide a sweet contrast.
Fresh Vegetables: If serving your cheese platter as a main course, adding fresh vegetables like carrot strips, cucumber slices, or a bowl of cherry tomatoes can provide a refreshing and savory touch.
Sauces and Jams: Do not forget to include fresh jams or sauces like pesto, as they can complement and elevate the flavors of your cheese platter .
PAY ATTENTION TO THE LITTLE DETAILS
While selecting high-quality ingredients is essential for a delightful cheese platter, there are other factors to consider, such as the serving platter and serving temperature.
Serving the platter: The size of the platter should match the number of guests and the role of the cheese platter in the meal—whether it’s an appetizer, main course, or dessert. Opt for treated hardwood or slate platters as they are more durable, resist cutting marks, and do not absorb strong cheese odors.
Temperature: To savor the cheeses at their best, serve them at room temperature. If you’ve prepared the platter in advance and stored it in the fridge, remember to take it out 10 to 15 minutes before serving. This allows the ingredients to reach their optimal temperature, enhancing the full range of flavors and textures.