Cheese and Chocolate? Yes please to this Easter Cheeseboard dream!
We love cheese and we love chocolate. And now Morgan McGlynn shows us how to combine our two loves with an Easter Cheeseboard of dreams. It comes from her forthcoming book, The Modern Cheeseboard, out in July.
Board Style: Marble
Easter offers a great opportunity to entertain. Part of the beauty of this board is that it is a great addition to your Easter spread and it looks impressive, but doesn’t require any cooking. Full of spring beauties, it features seasonal cheese specials and a few chocolate eggs thrown in for good measure. I like to add a bit of cold lamb leftover from the Easter dinner to make the board extra delicious.
Spring seasonal cheeses such as Gouda and Basque sheep’s cheese are beautifully tasty due to the luscious pastures that the cow or goats feed on in the spring months which makes the cheeses taste rich and complex.
200g (7oz) Basque sheep’scheese
200g (7oz) Gouda
150g (5½oz) ParmigianoReggiano
125g (4½oz) mini Camembert
1 Ragstone goat’s cheese log
½ joint of cold roast lamb
80g (2¾oz) sliced prosciutto
handful of thin asparagus spears
100g (3½oz) tenderstem broccoli
3 baby carrots with tops
120g (41/4oz) piece of honeycomb
30g (1oz) mint sauce
300g (10½oz) chocolate eggs (I use a mixture of mini sugar-coated eggs and larger chocolate eggs)
small handful of shelled pistachios
20g (¾oz) almonds
handful of dried apricots
8 leftover roast potatoes
Bread and crackers
handful of fennel seed tarallini
6 malted milk biscuits
20g (¾oz) cornichons
handful of thyme sprigs
bunch of curly-leaf parsley
Steam the asparagus and tenderstem broccoli for 5 minutes and leave to cool. Cut the Basque sheep’s cheese and Gouda into triangles. Keep the Camembert whole and cut a few slices from the goat’s cheese. Cut the Parmegiano Reggiano into batons. Peel the carrots, leaving the tops in place, and halve them lengthways. Slice the cold roast lamb. Halve most of the strawberries. Thinly slice the cucumber. Place the honeycomb in a ramekin or bowl and the mint sauce in a separate bowl or jar. Place the mini sugar-coated chocolate eggs in a ramekin or bowl.
Place the whole Camembert at the bottom right of the board with the carrots, asparagus and tenderstem broccoli nearby and fan the triangles of Basque sheep’s cheese and Gouda near the top right of the board. Place the goat’s cheese (whole cheese and slices) in the top left corner of the board. Place the honeycomb near the fanned-out cheese triangles, along with the fennel seed tarallini. Shingle the Parmigiano Reggiano along the bottom left corner of the board. Fold the prosciutto slices near the goat’s cheese and place the cornichons nearby. Put the ramekin or bowl of mini sugar-coated chocolate eggs on the left of the board and fan the malted milk biscuits around it. Fill the gaps with the strawberries, cucumber, remaining chocolate eggs, pistachios, almonds and dried apricots. Garnish with the thyme and parsley.
Serve the lamb, mint sauce and potatoes separately.
Basque sheep’s cheese + roast lamb + cornichons
Gouda + prosciutto + dried apricots
Parmigiano-Reggiano + roast lamb + mint sauce
Camembert + strawberries + chocolate eggs
Ragstone goat’s cheese + prosciutto + pistachios
The Modern Cheeseboard by Morgan McGlynn is published on 19th July by White Lion Publishing, £16.99. Photography Jamie Orlando Smith.
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