I actually sort-of love having semi-last-minute guests. I really love planning for a beautiful, thought-out and organized “event.” But sometimes if I know in advance, I can tend to get worked up and go a little crazy. If it’s somewhat-last-minute though, I only have time to enjoy the moment. During the holidays, I want to be able to ask someone over on the spur of the moment. Having a sweet and simple cheese plate to throw together is an elegant, but no-fuss way to offer a simple welcome.
A simple cheese plate doesn’t require cooking and can be made with what you have on hand.
For our cheese plates, I like to combine a hard aged cheese of some sort, a softer cheese with tang (goat cheese is my all-time go-to), often a cheddar and a blue cheese. Then I add a cracker (I almost always have a package of gluten-free seed crackers in the pantry), a sliced meat, and fresh fruit. If I have it, I’ll add a fruit jam or a pesto, a compote or a spread.
For this quick plate I used a cheddar with caramelized onion, a soft goat cheese (Humboldt Fog), and a blue cheese drizzled with honey (my all-time favorite!). We added folded slices of prosciutto, gluten-free crackers, and grapes and strawberries I already had on hand.
One thing I like about a cheese plate is that I can use the ingredients for other dishes if I don’t need them for guests.
The morning after we serve a cheese plate, I love to incorporate the leftover cheese into a frittata or other easy egg dish. The fruit can be served with oatmeal or a little drizzle of cream.
What’s your favorite go-to snack to put out for last-minute guests? Do last-minute visits make you nervous? 🙂
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