How to make a Killer Summer Cheeseboard (with Pickled Strawberries + Herb Roasted Cherry Tomatoes!).
Truthfully, I have been dying to tell you how to make a killer summer cheeseboard for like ever.
This is one of those recipes where I have had the idea for a while now but obviously, me being me, needed to wait until just the right time to share. Thankfully, the week before the 4th of July (finally) seemed like a good time.
So today I bring you the most epic summer cheeseboard of all time.
OK, well maybe not of all time, because I have full confidence that you can all make you own most awesome cheeseboards…meaning…you can use your favorite cheeses, fruit and spreads… and leave the stuff you don’t love out.
However, this is also one of those recipes that is not really “a recipe”. More like me telling you the way I like to do a cheeseboard. BUT I do have a recipe for some pretty awesome pickled strawberries, plus another for roasted tomatoes, and a few secrets about the bestest way to “do up” cheese.
Secrets like drizzling your blue cheese with honey, drizzling you burrata with olive oil and rosemary, grilling your brie and rolling your goats cheese in fresh summer herbs. Maybe not HUGE secrets, but must do’s for me.
Creating a cheeseboard (or plate as some people like to call em’) is honestly one of the easiest appetizer/snacks you can serve. It doesn’t have to be fancy or anything, it’s just got have a variety of great cheeses, preferably some awesome fruit, plus really yummy bread or crackers.
So who did I learn all this from? Well, a little from the internet, a little from books and magazines, but mostly all from my Nonnie. I actually owe a lot of my kitchen skills to her. She is kind of the expert on entertaining…but she still just cannot get me to remember which side of the plate the fork goes on, and which side the knife goes on. I swear it’s just something my brain cannot master. I am definitely more than a little challenged with my left’s and right’s, so I am going with the excuse that this shortfall is due to my “disability”.
Anyway, my nonnie can make a KILLER cheeseboard, and I think she will be the first to tell you, it’s all about good cheese and good wine. I didn’t really pick up the wine pairing gene, but the cheese I can do.
All those years of cheese and crackers (and wine + orange juice in a wine glass for little me) really did pay off. I clearly absorbed a lot.
I also learned that a pretty cutting board has like a million and one tasks in the kitchen. SO make sure you always have some go-to cutting boards on hand. Just sayin.
Here’s the thing, cheese is in season ALL YEAR and THANK GOD for that, but I love creating seasonal cheeseboards. With summer cheeseboards, there has to be lots and lots of fruit. It’s just kind of the perfect time, cheese + fruit are a magical pairing.
For my board, I went with pickled strawberries, which I do promise are oh so good. Just try them before you judge, AND, any leftovers can be used in a grilled cheese and or over ice cream. YUMMERS.
I also did some herb roasted cherry tomatoes (double yum), grilled peaches, apricots, fresh cherries and figs. Then I added salty olives, prosciutto (or salami) and sweet honey. Then that’s it, your done!
Just arrange everything on a pretty cutting board or large serving tray. Then make it extra pretty with some summer flowers from the garden. See, there really could not be a better time to make a cheeseboard.
Like maybe this Saturday for the 4th of July?? BONUS – you’ll get to eat all the leftover cheese for breakfast the next day. YESS!
Now I gotta go do a little online shopping. My brother’s girlfriend, Caitlin has gotten me right back into my old clothes loving self and now all I want to do is shop!
How’d I ever get away from doing this in the first place?!?
How to make a Killer Summer Cheeseboard (with pickled strawberries + Herb Roasted Cherry Tomatoes!).
Course: Appetizer, Dessert, Snack
Keyword: cheese, cheeseboard, strawberry
Here's the thing, cheese is in season ALL YEAR and THANK GOD for that, but I love creating seasonal cheeseboards. With summer cheeseboards, there has to be lots and lots of fruit. It's just kind of the perfect time, cheese + fruit are a magical pairing.
Pickled Balsamic Strawberries
- 12 ounces fresh strawberries halved
- small handful of fresh thyme + basil
- 1 cup white balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons honey or coconut sugar add 2 tablespoons more for a sweeter taste
- 1 vanilla beans seeds removed
Burst Cherry Tomatoes
- 2 pints heirloom cherry tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil plus more for serving
- 1/2 cup fresh herbs (I used basil oregano and dill)
- 4 cloves garlic minced or grated, divided
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 ounce round of brie [grilled | https://www.halfbakedharvest.com/grilled-brie-blackberry-basil-smash-salsa-grilled-bread/]*, 8
- 1 ounce wedge gorgonzola or blue cheese 8
- 8 ounces manchego cheese
- 1 ounce log herb rolled goat cheese 8
- 8 ounces fresh burrata cheese
- olive oil for drizzling on the burrata
- fresh rosemary for the burrata
- 6-8 ounces fresh salami and or prosciutto cold
- honey for drizzling
- green olives for serving
- grilled peaches nectarines and or apricots, for serving
- fresh figs halved, for serving
- fresh grapes and or cherries for serving
- spicy fruit/pepper jellies for serving
- toasted walnuts for serving
- toasted bread and or crackers for serving
Pickled Balsamic Strawberries
- Add the strawberries, basil and thyme to a glass jar. In a bowl whisk together white balsamic, honey and vanilla bean seeds. Pour over the strawberries. Seal the jar and place in the fridge until cold. Should last about 3-4 days in the fridge.
Burst Cherry Tomatoes
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Add the cherry tomatoes, olive oil, 2 tablespoons fresh chopped herbs, 2 cloves minced garlic and a generous sprinkle of salt and pepper to a baking dish. Toss well, making sure the tomatoes are coated in olive oil, herbs, garlic, salt and pepper. Roast for 10-15 minutes or until the tomatoes collapse. Remove and toss with the remaining herbs,
- Allow to cool slightly and then transfer to a serving bowl. Can be made 1 day in advance.
- Grab a really big cheeseplate/board. Assemble the cheeses on the board. Arrange all your desired serving items (fruits, spread, nuts, olives, bread + crackers) around the cheese.
- Drizzle the blue cheese with honey.
- Drizzle the burrata cheese with olive oil and garnish with a spring of rosemary.
- Top the grilled brie with pickled strawberries.
- Makes sure to serve with toasted bread and or crackers
*To grill your brie, preheat your grill to high heat or preheat your oven to 450° degrees F. Place the brie on the grill and grill for about 2-3 minutes per side or until slightly charred. Remove from the grill. Be careful when flipping the brie, you do not want to break the brie open. Serve warm. **To make herb rolled goat cheese, combine the zest of 1 lemon, 1/4 cup fresh basil, 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme, 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary and a pinch of pepper on a cutting board. Roll an 8 ounce log of goat cheese in the herbs. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the fridge until ready to serve.
Double awesome…triple yikes!