How To Make The Perfect Platter
Platters have been a long time staple for parties and get-togethers, basically any type of social event. But with grazing boards, as they are now called, gracing our social media feeds filled with colourful, perfectly arranged fruits, meats and cheeses, unfortunately, the traditional cabanossi and Jatz combo just won’t cut it anymore. But it’s not has hard as you think. We are here to give you our foolproof guide to making the perfect platter every time.
Now there is a reason everyone loves platters - because there is something for everyone! So when thinking about the ingredients, make sure to include a diverse range of salty, sweet and savoury foods. Now, presentation is the key to an amazing platter. As the saying goes, people do actually eat with their eyes. Therefore, the more colours and textures on your platter, the more appealing it will be. Fruits like berries are great for adding some extra colour to your board, while cheeses, crackers and meats are perfect for adding some texture. But before we look at the ingredients we need to make sure that we have something amazing to serve it on, like a wooden board or marble tray. You can also add some dimension and height to your platter by layering items.
The key to a well designed platter is to serve ingredients in threes. For example, serving three types of cheese, three types of crackers etc. With the three cheeses it is best to have one hard, one soft and one blue option. Make sure to spread your ingredients evenly over the board, too. Not only does this make it more appealing to the eye, but your guests won’t have to reach across the table for what they want.
Start with a centrepiece and build around it, on the other hand, you can begin by placing your three cheeses and filling in the gaps. It’s also great to get creative with the shapes of your cheese - try including a round piece, a wedge and some slices.
Swirl your crackers on the board through the middle and around other ingredients. Choose some different small bowls and ramiken dishes and opt for bright coloured dips like beetroot, capsicum or pumpkin to add some extra pops of colour. Also remember to include some vegetables like carrots and celery for dipping. Quince paste is often a platter favourite and should be positioned near cheese. Don’t forget a small bowl of olives or some sun-dried tomatoes as well! Since most things will touch one another, it is best to ensure one food will not spoil another, so keep your olives in a bowl and your fruits away from your meats. Now you can add your cold meats and larger fruits. Cut mangoes and kiwi fruit, fold your salami, roll prosciutto and create a nice stacking effect. Finish the platter with some extras like dates, nuts, dark chocolate, dried figs and small fruits like berries and grapes to fill in the remaining gaps.
Things to remember:
Small portions! Grazing platters are suppose to be easy to pick up and eat without the need for a knife and fork.
Quantity - depends on whether or not you have other courses planned for the event. If you do, a general rule is to allocate approximately 60 grams of cheese per person, a couple of slices of meat and a few of the other things
Serve at room temperature - platters are designed to be grazed on overtime, so don’t include anything that will go off too quickly in the summer heat. Try only serving half of the cheese and keeping the rest in the fridge for later on