No-Cook

Chocolate & Cheese Plate

October  8, 2021
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Photo by Marissa Mullen
Author Notes

If you were a fan of my Halloween candy and cheese pairings from last October, where I paired unexpected duos like Manchego with Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups and Brie with candy corn, get ready. Because this year, I’m taking it up a notch and exploring the world of cheese and chocolate pairings outside the realm of grocery store Halloween candy.

Similar to cheese, chocolate has flavor notes that can be characterized as nutty, creamy, and tangy, which complement cheeses beautifully. Chocolate also spans a wide variety of textures and styles, adding an exciting element to any cheese plate. I kept this plate simple, focusing primarily on the chocolate and cheese, but I also included a few autumnal crunchies, like pumpkin-spiced biscotti and ginger tea cookies. This is the perfect low-key dessert to pull out after a big dinner, and you can enjoy it all fall and winter long!

Pairings:

- Comté and dark chocolate with hazelnuts: Comté is an aged cow’s milk cheese from the Alpine region of France. The tasting notes are typically described as predominantly sweet and nutty, with subtle notes of cream and yeast. The bitterness of dark chocolate contrasts with the sweetness of the Comté, while the hazelnuts play into the nutty quality of the cheese.

- Blue cheese and dark chocolate truffles: Blue cheese is typically made from cow’s milk and has tasting notes that are pungent, spicy, creamy, and slightly sweet. A rich dark chocolate truffle cuts through the intensity of the blue, standing up to the strong profile while providing a sweet and dense complement.

- Triple-crème Brie and 60% dark-chocolate-covered cherries: Triple-crème Brie is a cow’s milk cheese, made with an extra layer of cream added in the cheese-making process. All triple-crème cheeses are required to have a butterfat content of 75% or more. This rich and creamy cheese needs a pairing that can cut through the decadence. Chocolate-covered cherries are the perfect solution, with the tangy cherries brightening up the overall flavor profile, and chocolate adding a sweet boost.

- Fresh chèvre and bittersweet dark chocolate: Fresh chèvre is a young goat’s milk cheese, with a creamy, crumbly texture and bright notes of lemon and milk. Bittersweet, preferably 70% dark chocolate goes well with this cheese, bitter yet sweet enough to balance the acidic profile of the cheese.
Marissa Mullen

  • Prep time 15 minutes
  • Serves 4 to 6
Ingredients
  • 5 ounces Comté
  • 5 ounces blue cheese
  • 6 ounces triple-crème Brie
  • 5 ounces fresh chèvre
  • 1 (3.5-ounce) bar of dark chocolate with hazelnuts
  • 3 ounces dark chocolate truffles
  • 3 ounces 60% chocolate-covered cherries
  • 1 (3.5 ounce) bar of bittersweet dark chocolate, preferably 70%
  • Biscotti (plain or pumpkin-spiced), for serving
  • Gingersnaps or ginger tea cookies, for serving
In This Recipe
Directions
  1. Slice the Comté into even 1-inch-thick rectangular slices. Place the blue cheese, triple-crème Brie and chèvre on the plate as is.
  2. Place the dark chocolate with hazelnuts with the Comté, the chocolate truffles with the blue cheese, the chocolate-covered cherries with the triple-crème Brie and the 70% dark chocolate with the fresh chèvre. Serve the biscotti and cookies on the side for additional pairings and crunch.

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Marissa Mullen is a Brooklyn-based food stylist, recipe developer, photographer and cheese lover. She is the founder of That Cheese Plate and creator of the Cheese By Numbers method. She is also the author of the best-selling cookbook, That Cheese Plate Will Change Your Life, a step-by-step styling guide for crafting beautiful and delicious cheese plates as a form of creative expression. Featured on The Today Show, The Rachael Ray Show, Business Insider, Vox among others, Marissa is dedicated to bringing people together through creativity, food and entertainment.

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