Your guide to the ultimate vegetarian cheese board. From the crunchies to the savories and everything in between, it’s really as easy as 1, 2, 3!
I’ve always been a bit intimidated by cheese boards. There are just so many types, and how in the heavens are you supposed to just know which cheeses pair with which whats (you know?) (p.s. don’t tell the Dutch government about my previous somewhat lacking in cheese knowledge, that’s probably grounds for deportation).
What goes on a cheese board?
I’m the type who does real well with a formula, so I thought today I’d share with you my formula for the ultimate vegetarian cheese board. It’s as easy as 1-2-3-4-5!
One fruit compote
Three savory things
You can build your board depending on what flavors and cheese you like using Castello’s super handy cheese board builder, or just follow along to see how I made mine!
One fruit compote: For Thanksgiving this year, (i.e. the tulip-family’s 1st Thanksgiving!) I went all out. I made this cranberry sauce, it was so great, and I’ve been looking for a reason to make it again (besides the fact that it’s cranberry week!)
Two fruits: Medjool dates and apples, because dates are basically natures caramel and because the crisp, tartness of a good apple is perfect with cheese.
Three savories: Roasted chickpeas (because these are probably the most undervalued snack of all time), olives, and toasted walnuts.
Four crackers/breads: Ample carbs are in high demand on any cheeseboard. I fell absolutely in love with Lesley Stowe Raincoast flatbreads and crisps after they sent me a few boxes. They have one that has beets and nuts and magic in it, which pairs well with just about anything.
Five cheeses: You may be thinking “that’s a lot of cheese”. You are correct. But too much cheese? Heck no. Traditionally you’ll want to go with “something old, something new, something goat, and something blue” to get a lot of flavors and textures up in there. Today I went the non-traditional route and got my different flavors from a variety of Castello Havartis (jalapeno, wild garlic, and creamy original) and two blues (Danablue and black).
- 1 12-oz bag fresh or frozen cranberries 340 g
- 1 cup sugar 235 g
- 1/2 mandarine orange sliced
- Pinch of salt and pepper
- 1 15-oz can chickpeas 425 g, drained and patted dry
- 1 Tbsp olive oil 15 mL
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black ground pepper
- 1/4 tsp paprika
- 2 tsp nutritional yeast if you have it
- 1 apple sliced and spritzed with lemon to keep color
- Handful fresh medjool dates pitted
- 1/2 cup olives
- 1/2 cup walnuts toasted
- Crackers I used and loved Lesley Stowe Raincoast brand
- Cheese I used a variety of Castello Havarti, Castello Danablu, and Castello Black
- Wine I paired mine with Folie a Deux Pinot Noir
- Reserve a handful of the cranberries and combine the rest in a medium saucepan with the sugar and sliced mandarine orange (throw in the peel and all!) Heat over medium until the cranberries begin to soften, about 5 minutes, then increase the heat to medium/high and cook until the cranberries pop, about 5 more minutes. Remove the mandarine slices, mix in the reserved handful of cranberries, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Allow to cool to room temperature before serving.
- Combine chickpeas, oil, and seasonings and lay onto a parchment paper-lined baking tray. Roast at 425 degrees F (218 C) for about 25 to 30 minutes, or until crisp.
- Bring cheese close to room temperature before serving. For cleaner serving, slice the cheese before serving. For optimal “wow” factor” pile your tray high and enjoy with wine!
Thanks again to Castello Cheese for sponsoring this post!