Can you believe that July 4th is right around the corner? My mother used to always say that the year flew by after the Fourth of July – summer break would end, then school activities would begin, and before you know it – the holidays! And while I’m sure the majority of us want this year to conclude, there are some things I don’t want to rush – like my new found love of gardening. Or being able to serve this patriotic cheeseboard.
But before we get the deets on this cheeseboard, let’s talk a little more about that new hobby of mine. If you’ve been following along on my homebuying journey, then you’re well aware that the previous owners left this house a little less than taken care of. To be quite honest, I’m overwhelmed at where to even begin. At first I wanted to jump right on board with my living room plans, but after having numerous conversations with the neighbors, I thought it would be best to tackle the front yard because it hadn’t been taken care of in ages. The current “garden” was overgrown and the previous homeowners used it as a trash can for their dog excrement. So gross.
Anyway, I invited my mother to stay with me for the weekend and we devised a plan to get it looking so much better.
And it does!
It even has a fairy garden.
So, now I totally want to work on the mess of a backyard and plant all the things. But – I don’t have the greenest of thumbs, so I’m going to take it slowly, learning all about the flowers I’m planting before I get more. I attempt gardens each year and end up failing, so I’m going to be proactive and try not to fail on this one.
Fortunately, something that never fails me: styling a cheeseboard.
If you’ve been following me for a few years, you may remember the seven steps to creating the ultimate cheeseboard I shared a while back. And while the cheeseboard I was styling was autumn-inspired, the concept remains the same for each and every one.
Step 1: Choose your board. I love wooden cutting boards but ever since I bought this slate cheeseboard it has been my go-to.
Step 2: Add your cheese. I love all the cheeses. However, lately I’ve been gearing the cheese more towards what Audrey would love. On this one, since I knew I wanted it to be fruit heavy, I added a cream cheese fruit dip, some white cheddar cheese cut into stars with a metal cookie cutter, and some pepperjack (okay, so not all the cheese is for Audrey).
Step 3: Add salty things. Living in North Carolina for a couple of years limited this for me, especially when it came to adding the charcuterie. I couldn’t find the ring bologna or summer sausage that is found in abundance in Pennsylvania, but meats like the green peppercorn salami and thinly sliced capicola ham we have on this board seem to be found everywhere. You an also add pickles, olives, and nuts. Really, anything that adds some saltiness is a go!
Step 4: Add sweet things. Like fruit. I wanted to stick with a red, white, and blue theme so we chose strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and red grapes. I didn’t end there, though – I picked up some Popcornopolis Americorn popcorn from our recent Sam’s Club trip and some yogurt covered pretzels to add more texture with the sweetness.
Step 5: Add some bread and crackers. While this cheeseboard is a little heavier on the fruit and cheese side, I wanted some crackers to pair with the charcuterie. This olive oil and rosemary cracker paired perfectly with a slice of pepperjack wrapped in some capicola.
Step 6: Add condiments. This is always my favorite part. I love apple butters, fig jams, hummus, grainy mustards, etc. On this board, the cream cheese dip played the role of the condiment as well as a third cheese choice, because of the rest of the selection on the board. It can be this simple. Truly.
Step 7: Fill the spaces. I typically fill all the spaces with more fruit. I snip little bundles of grapes so they can easily be picked up, strawberries, etc. My thoughts on cheeseboards is that less is not more. When you think you’re finished add more!
Want more inspiration?
- Here’s a Valentine’s Day cheeseboard
- And one for St Patrick’s Day
- One of my favorites: this Easter one
- They don’t have to be extravagant – you an do this simple summer board
- Or this board that’s perfect for the holidays
And don’t forget this one. This patriotic cheeseboard that is absolutely perfect for your summer holiday events.
Cream Cheese Fruit Dip
- 8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
- 1/4 c. heavy cream
- 3/4 c. powdered sugar
- 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
In a medium mixing bowl, whip the cream cheese with a whisk until smooth. Add the heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Whisk until you have a smooth consistency.