I can’t believe Valentine’s Day is already here! Do you know what you’re doing for dinner? Going out can be such a hassle. Lots of restaurants offer prix fixe menus for Valentine’s Day (which are usually not that different than their regular menus, and a lot more expensive, to boot). Scoring a reservation can be difficult, if you don’t book early. Plus, there’s the added complication of venturing out in the wintertime, finding parking, and walking in the snow or slush in a pair of heels!
To avoid disappointment, my husband and I have been opting to stay in on Valentine’s Day for the last few years instead. We like to treat ourselves to a bottle of wine and an indulgent meal. But at the same time, we don’t always want to prepare something elaborate because we want more quality time together. Our solution? A cheese & charcuterie board! I mean, what can be more indulgent than drinking wine and eating cheese? It’s definitely the quickest way to my heart! Today, I’ve teamed up with Castello Cheese to show you how you can put together a Valentine’s Day Cheese & Charcuterie Board of your own very simply. You can either make this as a treat for your loved one, or do it as an activity together. Either way, it’s simple, fun, and delicious!
You might recall that I partnered with Castello Cheese during the holidays to share 5 Simple Tips to Create the Perfect Cheese and Charcuterie Board. If you haven’t seen the post, you’ll definitely want to check it out. Follow my tips and you’ll be well on your way to mastering the art of the cheese and charcuterie board!
To tailor my cheese and charcuterie board for Valentine’s Day, I added a lot of elements suitable for the occasion! I did a good mix of sweet and savoury, so the board could be our appetizer, main course, and dessert all in one! Below are 4 tips on how you can make a Valentine’s Day cheese and charcuterie board that’s sure to impress and satisfy, and also a breakdown on what I used to create my board.
1. Start with a variety of good quality cheese
Like I said in my previous post on cheese boards, you want the cheese to be the ‘star’ of your board. So, it’s a good idea to select a variety of cheeses. Apart from variety, you want to go for quality. Castello is my cheese of choice because they’ve been in the cheesemaking business for over a century and have won a number of awards over the years. They have a flavour to suit all taste buds. I start each of my boards by arranging my cheese.
2. It’s all about the romantic, little details
The little details always matter the most and Valentine’s Day is no exception! To add a cute and romantic touch to my board, I cut heart-shaped pieces out of Castello’s Brie Cheese using a cookie cutter. I got so much satisfaction cutting through the rind and through the soft, creamy interior (I just know we’ll feel the same when we bite into this on Valentine’s Day). If you like the little hearts idea, you could do the same with jam-filled finger sandwiches, or even add heart-shaped cookies. For some extra love on the board, I made poached pears and added Baba Ghanoush, pomegranate and chive canapés.
3. Add pops of red
I love adding pops of colour to my cheese and charcuterie boards. For Valentine’s Day, I wanted red to be my accent colour for obvious reasons, so I picked up a number of red-coloured foods!
4. Chocolate is a no-brainer
If your partner is anything like mine, chocolate on your Valentine’s Day cheese and charcuterie board is a no-brainer! I opted for a mix of dark chocolate and chocolate with nuts inside. Including chocolate is a great way of adding dessert to your board.
Here is a full list of all the items I used on my board:
- Cheeses: All of the cheeses I used on my board are from Castello (you can see a full list of their cheeses here). Each has a distinct flavour and leaves you with a different sensation. I used the:
- Brie – it has a mild aroma and flavour, and is so creamy on the inside. It would even be great for spreading over some of the crackers on the cheese board.
- Cheddar with Savoury Onion – my favourite of all the Castello cheeses because it’s tangy and not sharp. It’s also crumbly, not hard like a lot of aged cheddars. So, it’s easy to cut. The little bits of onion inside also add a nice texture to the cheese. I could honestly eat this every day!
- Cheddar with Cracked Black Pepper – similar in terms of texture to the Savoury Onion, but with a cracked black pepper flavour. I just love the spice and how crumbly and crunchy it is!
- Extra Creamy Danish Blue – this has a big, bold flavour with a creamy texture. It pairs so well with the poached pears on my board.
When adding them to my board, I left most of the cheeses whole, and cut one of the cheddars into cubes for added depth.
- Meats: I kept the meats pretty light this time around. I used prosciutto and spicy pepperoni sticks. If you are a big carnivore, you can add any other meats you desire to your board.
- Spreads & Preserves: spreads and preserves are an essential element of any cheese and charcuterie board. I used wild blueberry jam, apricot jam, and grainy mustard here.
- Accoutrements: for all the pops of red, I used: dried cranberries, pomegranate seeds, red grapes, and I cut some figs (I just love seeing the centre of figs on my boards!). Then, to fill in the rest of the board, I used: chocolate with nuts, dark chocolate pieces, caper berries, round white crackers and rectangular rye crackers. Last, but not least, I put blackberries in a round ceramic dish in the centre of my board (if you have a heart-shaped dish, that would be even better).
So that’s it – how you can make a Valentine’s Day cheese and charcuterie board, and your Valentine’s Day dinner solution all in one post! Happy Love Day, friends!