By Julie Hartigan of Cooking w/Julie

June 18, 2019

Build the Best No-Sweat Summer Snackboard

Summer is the perfect time for relaxed entertaining with family and friends! Whether it’s a post-beach vacation happy hour, a picnic in the park, chilling out on the patio by the pool, or just escaping the heat in your air conditioned apartment; a gorgeous casual snack board is an awesome and effortless way to host a group. Here are our top tips to build the best warm weather board without breaking a sweat!

 

♥ Lighten Things Up

Think of your summer snack board as a breezy sundress vs. a winter version that’s more like a cozy wool blanket in front of a fire. Stick to imported cheeses, spreads, and snacks that will be refreshing and appealing after a day in the sun! We like to feature cooling dips such as a cucumber-yogurt based Tzatziki in addition to plenty of juicy produce alongside full flavored herbal cheeses such as imported Harvarti with Dill and imported Chèvre with Peppercorns and Herbs.

 

♥ Feature Seasonal Produce

Take a quick trip to your local Farmer’s Market for some seasonal finds that will help create a bountiful, colorful display. Fresh fruits like melon, cherries, peaches, and berries all pair beautifully with cheeses like imported Wensleydale and aged imported Manchego. Veggies such as cucumbers, tomatoes, baby peppers, radishes, young rainbow carrots, and even edible flowers and sprouts are healthy and refreshing to nibble with dips and spreads. For a lush natural look leave some small veggies whole, others halved or sliced, and some such as carrots or radishes displayed with a bit of their own lush greenery. Torn or whole fresh herbs such as basil, dill, or parsley will also add fresh flavor and a pretty burst of color.

 

♥ Charcuterie Optional

While we absolutely love cured meats paired with imported cheeses they’re often not as appealing on a super-hot summer day. If you do opt to include charcuterie in your summer snack board go lightly and consider serving them paired with juicy produce such as prosciutto wrapped melon slices or salami cubes skewered with tomato and imported Mozzarella to suit lighter summer appetites.

 

♥ Add a Little Sweet Treat

It’s always fun to add garnishes and drizzles to your board so each nibble can be its own customized flavor experience. For summertime we love fruit based spreads or chutneys and luscious local honey to pair with imported cheeses – you can often pick these up at your local Farmer’s Market too! Small nibbles such as candied nuts, snack mixes, and even granola bites are all an excellent way to add some sweet crunchy options to your board.

 

♥ Keep it Casual

No need to fuss over a perfect display! Start with a large white platter; use plastic if you’ll be traveling or picnicking. Channel your inner artist and create pretty piles of multi-colored produce, a mix of pre-sliced and whole cheeses, small bowls of dips and spreads, and of course some crackers or toasted baguette slices. Then kick back, relax, and get grazing with your guests!

 

Happy Summer!