10 FOODS TO ACCOMPANY CHEESE
Cheese on its own is a delicacy, but if we want to get adventurous and vary a little, we have many options for accompanying cheese. We must distinguish between fresh, soft, semi-cured and cured cheeses, as the flavour and intensity of the cheese will determine what other flavours it can be accompanied with.
These ideas for accompaniments can be used to prepare recipes at home or simply to serve a snack at a special meal.
SWEET FOODS TO ACCOMPANY CHEESE
Quince: quince is a perfect combination with cheese, a play of textures and flavours that if you haven't tried it already, you should. Quince is especially used for blue cheeses or strong cheeses such as cabrales, but we also recommend it with semi-cured or cured cheeses.
Fresh fruit: the star fruit to accompany cheese is grapes. But here the range is very wide and you can combine almost anything you dare; apples, pears, figs, kiwis, oranges, peaches, cherries, mango, pomegranate, etc.
Dried fruits: with dried fruits, imagination is power, you can choose from sultanas, figs, dates, dried apricots, etc.
Jams and marmalades: the wide variety of marmalades allows for many combinations, although the most common are Brie cheese with raspberry jam, blue cheeses with apple jam, and Parmesan and goat's cheese with strawberry jam. But as we say, it's all about tasting and seeing what you like best. And if you dare with more, you can try some of these mixtures with a crunchy cracker underneath.
Honey: As with jam, honey can also provide the sweet touch that enhances the nuances of the cheese.
SAVOURY FOODS TO ACCOMPANY CHEESE
Nuts: one of the most common pairings for cheese, apart from wine, are nuts. The contrast of the crunchy texture of the dried fruit with the smoothness and creaminess of the cheese creates a unique sensation. There are no limits in this area, walnuts, almonds, pistachios, hazelnuts, whatever takes your fancy.
Olives and other pickles: it is common to see that when someone prepares a cheese board, it is usually accompanied by olives or other pickles. It's all a matter of playing with the acidity of the pickles.
Smoked salmon: if you want a more sophisticated accompaniment, you can try accompanying creamier cheeses with a little smoked salmon.
Bread: bread and cheese, cheese and bread, whichever way you look at it, they always go together. They are like fingernails and meat. From crusty toast, to wholemeal bread, wood-fired bread or any kind of loaf such as baguette, ciabatta or torta bread.
Oil: Have you ever tasted cured cheese after soaking it for a while in oil? If not, don't delay. You will be surprised. You can use the oil as a seasoning by mixing it with some spices, or simply soak the cheese for a few days until it is impregnated with the oil. This accompaniment is ideal for cured cheeses.