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“Cheese and meat go well with almost any occasion. Pair them up with wine and you have a great social gathering. That being said, there are plenty of things you can do with a cheese and meat pairing.”

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Tips For Pairing Cheese And Meat

Don’t be afraid of experimenting – sometimes the best plates come from a little trial and error. Creating your ideal cheese and meat pairing requires testing some food combinations and exploring your taste buds is a great adventure to experience. The experts over at Beginner Food gave us some tips on pairing cheese and meat that you can use for your next get together!

Pair According To Taste

Pairing Cheese And Meat

Sweet

Most cheese has a slightly sweet flavor to them. Pairing them with fruit draws out the subtle sweetness of the cheese. Figs pair well with parmesan or blue cheese. They’re best used around June and July so they’re more likely used in summer picnics and summer outdoors.

For gouda and cheddar cheese, the best fruit to use is dried apricots. Feta goes well with pears and cantaloupe is perfect with prosciutto. You can experiment with other fruits if you also want to have a bit of adventure.

Spicy and Salty

Bring some spiciness and salty blends by introducing olives in your meat and cheese pairings. Green olives, in particular, blend well with swiss or gouda. For winter holidays, try using cranberry chutney with cheddar.

You can also try cornichons and pair them with Emmental and salami for a bit of an acidic taste.

Pair By Texture

Most cheese and meat pairing have a lot of soft textures. Even the meat can be tender but some meats can be chewy. Adding some crunch to the softness adds a bit of variety and mixture of taste.

Nuts, as mentioned above, pairs really well with meat and cheese. Pecans with gouda is an interesting pairing, as well as cashews with blue cheese. Sesame sticks are also a great crunchy option and pairs well with parmesan or an asiago.

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Other Components You Can Add to the Pairing

There are other items you can pair with cheese and meat to enhance their flavor. You can try and complement your combinations with the following:

  • Bread or Crackers: In a hurry? Simple bread and crackers will do the job. Simplicity is the way since you want the meat and cheese to shine and not the bread. Thin slices of toast or breadstick should be enough for you. Light flavored crackers are also great to heighten the taste of the meat and cheese.
  • Olives and Pickles: These are the perfect contrast to the meat and cheese flavor. The sourness of the olives and pickles cleanses the flavor so you can enjoy another bite without the lingering taste.
  • Honey and Jams: Honey and jam add sweetness to the meat and cheese pairing. Especially if you’re serving brie or blue cheese, honey mixes well with it.
  • Nuts: The crunchiness of nuts surprisingly goes well with cheese and meat. You can add whatever nut you prefer. Experiment with walnuts, pistachios, pecans, and other nuts.
  • Fruits: The most common fruits you can use are grapes, raisins, dried figs, and dried apricots depending on the season.

Tips for Preparing the Cheese

Preparing the cheese is important otherwise the pairing could end up messy. Cheese compliments the flavor of the meat and you need it perfectly prepared. Use the following tips to prepare your cheese:

  • Make sure you slice the cheeses before serving them. It makes it easier for guests to prepare their meat and cheese.
  • Cut firmer cheeses into ¼ inch slices. Cut the softer cheese like blue cheese into small bites.
  • Remember cold cheese and room temperature have a huge difference when it comes to taste.
  • Make sure you have a serving knife available as they may want their cheese cut differently.
  • Allow the cheese to sit out for about 20-30 minutes before serving.

Conclusion

You’re now a step closer to assembling a perfect pair of cheese and meat. Remember that it’s better to experiment and find a combination that would suit your taste. If you’re doing this for an upcoming gathering or picnic, then you’ll never go wrong with adding an assortment of accompaniments to mix things up.