recommendations for a fruit and cheese plate
I'm having a dinner party this fiday starting with potato and leek soup and a main course of roasted pork with stuffed tomatoes.
I want to end with a fruit and cheese platter. What are some good matches? Plus, which wine with it? Thanks!!!
Stilton, pears, and port is always good, but the best fruit/cheese/wine combination I've ever had was cabrales (a Spanish blue), perfectly ripe white peaches, and a black muscat made by Quady called Elysium...heavenly.
I like pears or asian pears with cheese, also walnuts and dates.
I assume you are having more than one cheese, but if not, remember there are a few of us weirdos out there that won't eat blue cheese.
Basic idea is to have three or four cheeses of different types (soft, sheep or goat/chevre, semi-firm, firm, blue). Depending on where you are, consider the ripeness of the fruits available, and only choose those that are truly ripe; dried fruits can be better in certain cases.
Among the cheeses to consider other than those already mentioned:
(1) Soft: Taleggio or the various Vacherins or Roblochons. And Hubbardston Blue (not a blue cheese) from Massachusetts is wonderful with dried figs....
(2) Sheep, goat/chevre: Petit Basque (sheep), and the wonderful American goat cheeses by Coach.
(3) Semi-firm: Comte, Castellano (Spanish; some variations are mixed from sheep, cow and goat milk - wonderful)
(4) Firm: Parmigiano-Reggiano is superlative for eating; actually, for practically anything. Also Vella Dry Jack.
(5) Blue: Gorgonzola dolce (the younger, softer form; melts in your mouth, not in your hands), Maytag Blue
We had a fruit and cheese platter just Sunday afternoon. The cheese was a mild parmesan (from Gelson's) and it was surprisingly good with the absolutely freshest, sweetest strawberries (from a produce stand at the Strawberry Hill Golf course). They also had a blue cheese, and there were compliments on that, too (although I don't eat blue cheese, myself.) These cheeses were not the standard wrapped commercial kind, but provided by a supermarket. Maybe you have a Gelson's Market near you or a fine cheese shop. The simple combination was quite satisfying. I like the parmesan because it is a strong flavor and you really don't have to eat much of it to be sated. But, the strawberries have to be very sweet to couple nicely.