Photo by Tamara West
Cheese likes a little company but nothing too over the top. Warren Elwin makes an elegant selection.
Honey and walnuts
Buy the best New Zealand comb honey you can afford. It makes a very pretty pairing and sweetens up the cheese. Creamy, fresh New Zealand walnuts are also special — providing some earthy flavours and plenty of crunch.
Kiwifruit butter (jam)
Always nice to use the kiwifruit in different ways and it works so well with cheese. Makes 5-6 small jars.
- Wash 1.25kg whole kiwifruit and 500g granny smith apples. Roughly chop into even-sized chunks, skins and all, and place in a large saucepan.
- Add a 3cm piece of ginger (grated), the zest and juice of 1 lemon and 1 orange, a branch of rosemary (tarragon or lemon thyme) and 5 fresh bay (or kaffir lime) leaves.
- Place over a medium heat and simmer the mixture until it is soft and pulpy. Remove from heat, cool slightly, and pass through a sieve (discard the solids) into a clean saucepan.
- Add 1½ cups caster sugar and ¼ cup white wine vinegar. Simmer mixture over a medium heat, stirring often for about 20 minutes or until it thickens and becomes jam-like.
- Pour into small sterilised jam jars, seal and store in the pantry. Refrigerate after opening.
Wash some red and/or green grapes well and pat them dry with paper towels. Place on a baking paper-lined oven tray and bake in a 170C oven for 1 hour, then turn oven down to 70C and bake for a further 2 hours. Once cold, store in a sealed container in the fridge.
Good cheese is way better with a homemade cracker. Use a chewy flat bread such as pide or focaccia, slice into thin bite-sized shapes, brush with extra virgin olive oil and bake in a hot oven until just coloured and crispy. For a cheesy crisp, sprinkle with finely grated parmesan before baking.
Get some tips on how to create cheeseboards from world-renowned cheese expert Juliet Harbutt here.