It’s spring time and flowers are in bloom, it’s time to take advantage of the delicious produce in season and eat them with cheese! We can come out of our winter food hibernation and into a new food devouring experience and get ready for summer. This means moving away from the strong and musty flavoured cheeses, such as mouldy blue cheese, with a glass of red vino and switch it up for lighter and fresher flavours for the summer prelude.
Let’s start with the cheese -
Due to the animal’s diet of tender greens in the springtime, cheese tends to be more mild. Therefore lighter and creamier cheeses will be on menu, which is perfect for the full flavoured pairings of fresh fruit and nuts etc. In general, fresh soft cheeses would be great candidates for this season, as anything too strong or aggressive in flavour can be overpowering.
Some cheese suggestions include:
- Fresh goat’s cheese
- Sheep’s cheese
- Semi hard cow’s cheese
- Creamy blue cheese
You can also add harder mild cheeses like Parmigiano Reggiano or Manchego to balance all the soft cheeses. The key to a perfect cheese platter is all in the contrasting of textures and flavours.
Now onto the cheese pairings -
As most of these cheeses are soft and spreadable, an assortment of crackers such as water crackers, grilled baguette slices, breadsticks, or pita crackers etc would pair perfectly.
To accompany the bright soft flavours of the cheese, using produce in season will not only be in abundance but also taste amazing together with the fresh cheeses. Fresh is the key!
Some fruits that are in season for spring and can go incredibly well with cheese include:
- Any citrus fruits - or how about candied oranges/lemons for a sweet twist? You could even use them in place of crackers.
- Avocado - yes we are not kidding on this one!
- Cucumber slices for a kick of freshness
Fig jam or quince paste (or any jam or paste for that matter) can be a delightful textural variance. Try some onion jam for something new.
Other things to put on your spring cheese board can be fresh honeycomb, which is a crowd favourite. Toasted nuts, such as almonds or walnuts also work a treat. Candied walnuts can add a touch of crunchy sweetness to your board.
This also means pairing lighter styles of wine to complement the scrumptious spread. Rose, dessert wine or any white wines would complement this spring cheese platter nicely.
It’s all about imagining yourself basking in the sunlight and indulging in the season’s freshest produce - you will be rewarded with a cheese board full of colour and flavour.
So dig in and enjoy the start of summer!