How to Arrange a Cheese Platter
All you need is to follow the cheesemonger's rule: something old, something new, something stinky, and something blue.
Chhundo and Goat Cheese Crostini
Chhundo, a pickled marmalade-like condiment that’s tangy and sticky-sweet, with light heat and fragrance from Kashmiri chile powder, tops these goat cheese crostini, which blogger and cookbook author Hetal Vasavada serves at her Diwali celebration. Green mangoes are essential for this recipe—seek out large mangoes with light green skin and crisp white flesh.
Hash Brown Chaat
Sweet, spiced apple butter chutney and an herbaceous green chutney, crunchy toppings, and plenty of spices and herbs make this potato-based snack, which blogger and cookbook author Hetal Vasavada serves at her Diwali celebration, a riot of texture and flavors that is so essential to chaat (a category of Indian cuisine that roughly means “snacks”). Don’t skip out on the black salt, which adds distinct funkiness to the dish. Save leftover green chutney to top scrambled eggs, tacos, or grilled chicken.
Crudité Platter with Pimiento Cheese and Shiro-Miso Dip
Roasted Delicata squash, crisp raw vegetables, and two crowd-pleasing dips make this appetizer as beautiful as it is delicious. A citrus-spiked miso dip is a refreshingly light complement to the crudités, while a classic pimiento cheese is tangy, creamy, and satisfying. If you can’t find earthy, umami-rich black garlic molasses, balsamic glaze makes a great substitute.
Classic Cheese Ball with Spiced Pecans
This iconic Southern hors d'oeuvre is a classic for good reason—it’s easy to put together, looks polished on a platter, and boasts an irresistible savory flavor. Be sure to take the cream cheese out of the refrigerator at least 30 minutes in advance so it has plenty of time to soften before mixing up the cheese ball.