How to select, present, and enjoy vegan cheeses
Difficulty level: Medium
Cheese plates can be simple or elaborate, with dozens of different cheeses or just a few. There’s no one right way to make them, but these guidelines can help you put together a vegan cheese plate you and your guests will never forget.
Types of Vegan Cheese
The first thing to think about is the different types of cheese. You want to offer a variety of flavors, colors, and textures. So for a really elaborate cheese plate, you would choose at least one cheese in each of the following categories:
- Cheese base:
– Nuts (cashews, almonds, macadamia … )
– Seeds (sunflower, sesame)
- Textures: soft, hard, brie-style
- Tastes: mild, sharp, strong
- Added flavorings: herbs, spices, pepper
For example (clockwise from top):
Consider varying the presentation of the different cheeses: rounds, slices, cubes, balls, triangles
Any good cheese plate must be accompanied by bread and possibly crackers as well.
Jazz up your cheese plate with some edible garnishes:
- dried apricots
- sun-dried tomatoes
- Cheeses are best when served at room temperature. Make the cheese plate ahead of time, then keep it in the fridge until about an hour before you eat it.
- If you don’t have a cheese slicer, you can use a potato peeler to cut thin slices of hard cheeses like Parmesan.
- Provide a separate cheese knife for each cheese that needs to be cut or spread, as well as toothpicks for any cubed cheeses.
- Label each cheese. There are neat slate platters available (Amazon.com | Amazon.co.uk) on which you can write the name in chalk, or you can just tape a piece of paper on a toothpick and stick it in the cheese.
- Serve alongside a plate of crudités.