6 Unexpected Ways to Upgrade Your Cheese Plate
Have you heard of the Cheese Twins? It's the catchy moniker for twin brothers and cheese experts Michael and Charlie Kalish. After following different career paths -- beekeeping for Michael and a Fulbright scholarship for Charlie -- they made the leap to the cheese world and never looked back. Both brothers trained in cheesemaking and affinage (professional cheese aging) all over the world and now work as cheese consultants, brand ambassadors for Meiomi Wines, and cohosts of the Food Network's "Big Cheese." They also share their cheese knowledge on their blog, at food events across the country, and recently, in our test kitchen! Here, the Cheese Twins' top tips for taking your cheese plate to the next level.
1. SWITCH UP THE SERVING VEHICLE
While bread or crackers make fine accompaniments, there are so many more ways you can serve cheese. Try spreading cheese on sliced pears, apples, or strawberries, or dried fruit like figs or dates. (The best pairing Michael and Charlie introduced us to? Dried apricots and mascarpone cheese -- simple, accessible, and delicious.) The serving vehicle adds another textural component, makes it for easier for guests (they can just grab and go), and it's great for anyone who's gluten-free. Michael also recommends serving cheese on spoons to really let it shine. He says, "A lot of people, their instinct is to put cheese on something that downplays the flavors. I love using those tiny metallic spoons that are meant for caviar. Not only are they beautiful, but they're also perfect for cheeses that are cumbersome to hold."