The First Place Board
At our Cheese Board Competition, teams of chefs were asked to use only the items provided--a mix of holiday cheeses, meats, and accompaniments—and create a showstopping board in just 30 minutes. The result? A lot of gorgeous party platters, and one standout favorite from chefs Anita Lo and Mary Attea. Chef Lo, the previous owner of Michelin-starred restaurant Annisa, has been a contestant on Iron Chef America, Top Chef Masters, and Chopped All Stars. She and Mary Attea have cooked a state dinner at The White House and are widely recognized across the food world. We’ve recreated their original first place board that you can put together for your holiday gatherings.
preparation & ingredients
Slice the Aged English Cheddar into even-sized squares.
Partially chunk the Stilton, leaving just a little on the rind.
Fold the soppressata into triangles.
Slice one apple and cut a pomegranate in half.
Partially slice the goat log, leaving half the log intact.
Create 5-6 prosciutto wraps by cutting up the preserved pumpkin, wrapping it in Prosciutto di Parma, and sprinkling it with thyme.
On an oval-shaped board, place a small empty bowl towards the top right edge.
Along the top edge of the board, stretching from the left side of the bowl, create a shingled line of the cheddar squares. In the lower left area of the board, place the chunked Stilton and rind. Towards the right side of the board, about an inch to the right of the bowl, angle the goat log and slices.
Along the left side of the goat log, line up a pile of the folded soppressata slices. On the leftmost edge of the board, to the left of the Stilton, neatly stand the prosciutto wraps, standing upright if possible.
In the center of the board, place a bowl filled with marcona almonds.
Radiating out from the center bowl, at the 10 o’clock and 4 o’clock positions, make two neat lines of shingled crackers.
Fill the jar with Murray’s Spiced Cherry Preserves. Fill the empty space between the preserves and the almonds in the center of the board with apple slices. Below the almonds, to the right of the Stilton, place half or a quarter of a pomegranate topped with loose pomegranate seeds.
On the bottom edge of the board, between the pomegranate and crackers, place a small plate with honey comb on it.
Fill the empty space on the rightmost edge of the board with olives and herbs of your choice.