Express Impress With Fruit And Cheese

Posted by Leticia, 20 Jun 06

We're not talking about just throwing some grapes and cheese on a plate here...so tune in as Dr. Wright interviews Rocky Fino as they discuss how to make an amazing fruit and cheese platter. With so many varieties of fruit and cheese its easy to make a truly amazing dish that is guaranteed to impress your date.

Dr. Wright:
This is Dr. Leticia Wright for IDC dating.com where we're creating multicultural relationships everyday. Our broadcast today is with our sexy chef, Rocky Fino. He is the author of "Will Cook for Sex." Today, he is going to tell us what we can do with the fruit and cheese and how we can handle that for really almost any meal. Is that right?

Rocky Fino:
You got it. I get a little swagger every time you call me the sexy chef.

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Dr. Wright:
Okay. You talked about fruit and cheese and I just thought, "Hey, don't we just fill some grapes and some Swiss on a plate and call it a day?"

Rocky Fino:
You could on some days, but we're going to talk a little more about kicking it up a little bit.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
What's neat about cheese when we were talking earlier is the fact that there are so many varieties that it's a world that once you get into it, it never ends. You can expand on new tastes of cheese all the time and it's really kind of exciting. There are so many cheeses out there; there is a taste for everyone.

Dr. Wright:
Okay. Are we just looking really for what we like, to try what we like, or.?

Rocky Fino:
What's fun about fruit and cheese, the combination of using fruit and cheese, is the versatility of using it for either a dessert after a dinner or complementing a breakfast or even like complementing a lunch and sometimes complementing a dinner itself. Sometimes, everybody likes to look and went all over those beautiful pastry desserts at the bakery counter and they're delicious, but you can't live on them every night of the week, otherwise you will be 400 pounds. Everybody is a little bit more health conscious and I like to add fruit and cheese as a nice light dessert that complements the dinner well and it's light and it's not like you feel guilty afterwards or overdoing it on the calories; and it's fun though. The cheese itself is interesting because, you mentioned though, is it nerving for people? There are so many varieties, how do you pick? How do you choose?

Dr. Wright:
Right. How do we decide? Is cheese like wine where certain cheese would go with certain things?

Rocky Fino:
Yes, a little bit but yes and no. A lot of it is based on your personal taste and that is all. A lot of that's done by trial and error.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
And you'll have some fun. Now, we are going to talk how we combine it with some pieces of fruit and there are certain cheeses, like when you want to spread the cheese on to a slice of fruit. Obviously, you got to use a soft cheese, a spreadable cheese like a Brie or a Camembert. They're side by side in the counter usually, and then, of course, you can complement the plate with a little harder cheese, your Swiss varieties or even if you want to start with cheddars, which everybody is somewhat familiar with. You can start with some cheddar, even some soft whites. But like I said, the funniest part about cheese is, once you get in, being able to just keep trying new cheese after new cheese, after new cheese. It is a whole food. The excitement of food to me and my upbringing has always been that food is about everybody's culture and about different places in a world. If you are ever forced enough to travel to Europe and often their world of cheese is just totally a whole new world from what ours is. Even local avenue, you hear ads on the radio, you go (inaudible) cheese. They have their style of cheese. California has their style of cheese. Different parts of our own country here in the U.S. and then you expand out and of course, what is cool is specialty groceries are importing it.

Dr. Wright:
Right.

Rocky Fino:
Now, you go to stores like whole foods, is shop at whole foods, and what is fun about that is they've got cheese laid out everyday, new varieties.

Dr. Wright:
I got to get into the whole foods a little more often.

Rocky Fino:
It is funny, go in there and you just taste. You can sometimes, if you're lucky, you find these whole specialty groceries that are always sampling. They're putting out cheese samples for their customers and you could try different cheeses. The trickiest part is remembering what you like.

Dr. Wright:
Right, taking a note and coming backwards.

Rocky Fino:
Was that good? You've tried of every shoot, "I like that cheese, but what was it?" You got to keep the labels in a file.

Dr. Wright:
Now, let's talk about a little bit before you go into how the plates work, matching maybe a fruit and cheese. What's a good soft spreadable cheese for fruit?

Rocky Fino:
The best soft spreadable cheese for fruit I find is either Brie or Camembert.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
Now, they come in a pie shape typically and they got a shell on them. The shell is edible. Not everybody eats it. That is your choice, so you can either keep the creamy cheese right out from inside of the shell and spread it on. Again, it is soft, it is spreadable, it is very nice to spread onto slices of pear or apple or strawberries.

Dr. Wright:
Okay. I never thought about slices of strawberries.

Rocky Fino:
If you get the big enough ones.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
You will drive yourself crazy trying to do it on the little ones, but some actually see those good sizes of strawberries. What you want to do when we are laying out a plate with fruit and cheese, we will start with pear, Bosc pears, a personal favorite of mine, not the brown-skinned pear.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
We'll use a Bosc pear and we'll get some strawberries, good size strawberries. We'll going to size them about a quarter-inched thick and not thin strips but flat slices, so that they can hold the cheese.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
Crosswise slice, and then lay those out or fan those out on the plate and then just take a little bit of your Camembert and spread a little bit on each slice. Now, combine that on the plate with some additional whole strawberries and then expand it with whatever you feel like blueberries or some other berries would go well.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
And/or you can step up and put down a papaya or a mango.

Dr. Wright:
Wow! Okay.

Rocky Fino:
Now, the reason I want to talk about fruit and cheese and what's really fun about fruit and cheese is what you did last week with the two of you, you can switch it around next week and it's totally different.

Dr. Wright:
So, you can serve combinations of fruit and cheese once a week and still make it pretty exciting and interesting between the two of you.

Rocky Fino:
Every time, it's great. What's fun is that the two of you experimenting with new cheeses and stuff and it's fun to play between the two of you. It's like, "Hey, I found this cheese, let's try it."

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
Let's put this down. Let's say, we've done a little.

Dr. Wright:
A little cheese with this real cheese.

Rocky Fino:
Yeah. I'm not sure about who you're dating when you sit down to an elegant meal of cheese with.

Dr. Wright:
Yes. You pull off the cheese with some pretty much outfit there were.

Rocky Fino:
I actually had a girlfriend who grew up and she looked at me strangely, she is like, "I grew up with Cheez Whiz and Miracle Whip," and I would just look kind of like, "You're kidding me."

Dr. Wright:
Every those of you there outside.

Rocky Fino:
I didn't think those people existed.

Dr. Wright:
No, those are real people, but to those of you that are listening and you're outside of America, when Rocky and I where younger, there was this product called Cheez Whiz that was like in a spray can. It was the weirdest thing. It came out so the way we have whip cream in a can now. We thought it was really great back then but clearly that is not the healthiest food ever because I think that it didn't even needs refrigeration.

Rocky Fino:
No, that was a chemical in a can, you bet.

Dr. Wright:
We can stand that out as a dessert. Now, if we're doing a breakfast, do we stick with one or the other or we can still do a different, like one hard cheese, one soft cheese?

Rocky Fino:
You combine them up. I like to mix a couple of flavors. The idea of a cheese plate is to not sit down to one block of cheddar necessarily, but.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
To combine a couple of varieties of cheese. In that way, you get to experience different flavors of each little bite. Your cheese is on the richer side, so it's not like you are going to eat a ton of it. You've got small selections of each. We've got a soft cheese spread onto some fruit and we'd add a little fruit on the side. Again, when you get in to this and you want to try new varieties. You've got melons out there that you can add to the plate. You've got apples as I mentioned before, papayas, mangoes, kiwis, on and on the fruit world goes.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
They just all really kind of combine well with cheese in certain varieties. You're going to figure out. There are some cheeses out there that are very strong, very pungent strong cheeses that maybe it is not something that works well with a plum. You'll learn that quick.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
In those cheeses, that is something for a whole different palate, that is a mature palate. Now, we are working with Brie and Camembert, add some slices of a Jarlsberg, which is a variety of a Swiss.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
I think a Swiss cheese is a very versatile, fun cheese. Again, just thin slices or even put a chunk on the plate and allow the two of you to just straight from the knife, just have a cheese knife there and pick it right off the block.

Dr. Wright:
Okay. So, we just kind of add or this person can add a little more or little less than they'd like?

Rocky Fino:
Yeah, in that way they can work the block that they like more. There is a hundred of different varieties of blue cheese. So many people love blue cheese, crumbled blue cheese on a salad or on certain vegetables. Again, the same thing, here is the cheese that's got some real horsepower behind it. There is a flavor there. It combines well with the sweet textures of fruit against the stronger textures of certain cheeses. What I like to do is either I fan it out on the plate where I've got my nice sliced fruit with some soft cheese spread on top of the fruit and then decoratively lay out some other pieces of fruit as we talked about before, whether they're berries or melons or slices of apple or some citrus, do a little decorative style. If you have some parsley on the fridge, if you cook all the time, you do?

Dr. Wright:
Right.

Rocky Fino:
Just take a couple of sprigs of parsley or cilantro just for a garnish, like we've talked about before, just to simply brighten up the plate with some color; and then another thing to add to you plate as you venture in to some of the cheeses and you've laid out different styles of cheese, a goat cheese is another very creamy cheese. It doesn't spread as well as the Camembert or Brie because it crumbles, but at the same time, it's very soft.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
So, you could apply that to an apple slice or a pear slice, they're much the same.

Dr. Wright:
When they are crumbly, how do we make it thick? Do we do the fruit, peanut butter, and some cheese? What do we do to make it stay on?

Rocky Fino:
On a crumbly cheese, if you cut it with a knife, it doesn't crumble on you as much. It is when you go to spread it that it might crumble up on you as you're spreading. So, rather than spread it, just make a nice eighth-inch thick slice to the block and just add that to the fruit.

Dr. Wright:
Okay, because I could just imagine that being a really looking elegant and then crumbling all over.

Rocky Fino:
Crumbling all over your (inaudible). Yeah. I think a very neat entertaining way to serve cheese and fruit is (inaudible) chopping block or cutting board on the table with the two of you there and your cheese varieties and a couple of knives.

Dr. Wright:
It is very simple. I have a friend, she likes to go elegant. She has a block of marble that she always displays her fruit and cheese on.

Rocky Fino:
Yeah, they sell (inaudible) marble cheese block and again, a couple of knives. As a lot of people talked about, they like their cheese like the French call it straight from the knife and just cut with the knife and take a bite right off the knife there.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
One more thing to add to the plate, again as we're talking about varieties, week end and week out, you're picking different cheeses and combining them with different fruits and you get to play. You're constantly just playing. In some weeks, you might go, "That wasn't the cheese for me." But most of the time, you just that's the beauty of it to you because you get to just keep expanding and trying new things and having fun with it. Another thing to add your plate is some good (inaudible).

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
Now, just thinly slice your (inaudible) onto the plate and there you go. You've got now an added variety to the plate. You've had some fresh bread that you can combine the cheese on the bread between bites of the fruit and you've got a whole new another plate for the next week.

Dr. Wright:
Okay, that's a very thing. That is a great way to combine things because of all about keeping it fresh and we're talking about also keeping it simple, exciting but simple.

Rocky Fino:
Fresh, simple, and exciting. Another great aspect of the cheese plate especially if you're doing it as an after-dinner dessert or even a breakfast, you're not running out of cooking and everything, it's the two of you sitting down to a plate of cheese and just having fun with it.

Dr. Wright:
You really making sure that the meal that you prepare isn't so time effective and work costly that you don't get to spend time with the person because you're busy running around in the kitchen.

Rocky Fino:
That's the two-key. That's the whole style. That's my platform, is to cook, keep it simple, so you're not spending your entire time in the kitchen over the stove where she is sitting alone, waiting and wondering when do we're going to have a conversation.

Dr. Wright:
Right.

Rocky Fino:
We're making dishes that even if they do require some simmer time, there's some meats out there that required two hours or two and a half hours of simmer, they're simmering. You're not in there trying to put together six courses and combine them all to come out at the same time. We're not working in a commercial kitchen here, we're having fun at home with someone we want to spend time with. Cooking is just an extra added value to the entertainment time.

Dr. Wright:
For those of us who just eat American Cheez Whiz and old provolone, what are some good other cheeses to try or to start with if you don't have such a mature palate.

Rocky Fino:
I like the Monterey Jack. It's a very soft white and then from there, you can get in to the Pepper Jack, that have a little pop to them that combine a little pepper flavor in there; and again, goat cheese is a very mild, very creamy, and you'll find it more and more often out there, a versatile cheese in itself. People use it in salads. They deep fry it and crumble it and they do all kinds of things with goat cheese. That is a very soft creamy cheese to get if you have not started your venture. Brie cheese is a prevalent in all stores now and that is one of the cheeses that you'll find very common on a cheese dish.

Dr. Wright:
Okay.

Rocky Fino:
A great place to start is you got your Swiss, your Brie, and you got your goat cheese. There are cheddars. I'm not throwing cheddars out of the window. There are some great cheddars and there are some neat things to do with cheddar. I had a friend that he makes an apple pie with toasted New York sharp cheddar on top.

Dr. Wright:
Wow.

Rocky Fino:
But for a whole different topping. Cheese is so versatile. Cheddars are great too and I think blue cheese is the one that's got a pungent flavor to it that everybody is familiar with it. They've seen blue cheese. If you don't particularly like it, obviously, you don't go there but that's one that expands you into some of those other styles of cheeses; and from there, I think you just to start to venture.

Dr. Wright:
Then maybe even look at some brand and like there's a California brand that is woman-owned company. You kind of check out what different brands have because some of the other brands kind of specialize.

Rocky Fino:
Yeah. The way one brand makes a certain cheese, another company doesn't make it anywhere near that.

Dr. Wright:
Okay. Like you

Rocky Fino:
A different taste.

Dr. Wright:
So, just like wine?

Rocky Fino:
Like you mentioned before, much like wine. You got a cabernet and cabernet but they're two different worlds. Cheeses will go there too.

Dr. Wright:
Awesome.

Rocky Fino:
Like you said, much like wine.

Dr. Wright:
If they are going say they have high calories or anything and I think that's going to be my dessert next year for thanksgiving instead of.

Rocky Fino:
Perfect. They played with cheese.

Dr. Wright:
And pieces of cake after you've eaten 10,000 pounds of food. This has been Dr. Leticia Wright and Rocky Fino for IDC dating.com. IDC dating is where we're creating multicultural relationships everyday. Remember ignore ones conscience is safe and right; and I'll see you next time.

Responses to "Express Impress With Fruit And Cheese"

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  1. Posted: 10 Apr 07

    lots of good cheeses.....though I think fruit is better in many situations and lighter on the stomach!

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  2.   texasbest says:
    Posted: 06 Jan 07

    That sounds really good.

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  3.   gms77 says:
    Posted: 18 Dec 06

    Yes exactly very low in carbs!

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  4. Posted: 18 Dec 06

    sounds great and healthy

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  5. Posted: 05 Dec 06

    Good for you and low in carbs- easy on the waist!

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  6.   texasbest says:
    Posted: 29 Nov 06

    I love foods I can eat that are light on my stomach.

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  7.   mossimo36 says:
    Posted: 06 Nov 06

    Sounds easy to prepare and delicious too!!

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  8.   marquez097 says:
    Posted: 31 Oct 06

    Took it to work...was a hit there.

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  9. Posted: 25 Oct 06

    Makes for a great picnic too!

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  10. Posted: 16 Oct 06

    THIS LOOKS GREAT.....LIGHT AND EASY THANKS!

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  11.   marquez097 says:
    Posted: 12 Oct 06

    Great idea. Thanks

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  12.   whytb0y says:
    Posted: 07 Oct 06

    my date loved it , thanks 4 the great idea

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  13.   sweetest1 says:
    Posted: 27 Sep 06

    I set up a picnic with fruit, cheese, crackers, cream cheese fruit dip, and wine.... it was amazing!! The guy loved it and we laid out on a blanket and fed each other... very sensual

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  14.   Coco says:
    Posted: 25 Sep 06

    Ladies I sure hope these guys are taking notes! We're telling them the secret to a romantic, sensual evening!

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  15.   euroecuboy says:
    Posted: 24 Sep 06

    another good one

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  16.   Sweetheart says:
    Posted: 24 Sep 06

    I think me and my honey ( when I get one) need to try that.

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  17.   bradlee says:
    Posted: 24 Sep 06

    I mean damn! I just luuuv cheese, fruits, berries, red wine...perfect.

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  18.   JADE74 says:
    Posted: 17 Sep 06

    Nice..Just add a bottle of wine.....and have a wonderful time

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  19.   Fala says:
    Posted: 17 Sep 06

    Cheese, fruit and wine - the perfect start to a great evening with friends or someone special.

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  20.   embraceme says:
    Posted: 15 Sep 06

    I LOVE A EVENING IN FRONT OF A FIRE WITH A WARM BODY FEEDING ME GRAPES AND CHEESE BUT OF COURSE GIVE ME GRAPE WINE JUICE CAUSE I DONT DRINK LOL... EVERY WOMAN WOULD LOVE A MAN TO HAND FEED THEM SOME GRAPES ..

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  21.   Dora says:
    Posted: 14 Sep 06

    I love a romantic evening that starts out with a little wine, cheese and fruit.

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  22.   Kara says:
    Posted: 10 Sep 06

    Fell in love with many different kinds of cheeses in Europe, and have kept buying them here, so I appreciated this feature.

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  23.   Carla says:
    Posted: 10 Sep 06

    fruit wine and cheese are great sensual accents to a great sensual sexual experience........good story

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  24.   Coco says:
    Posted: 07 Sep 06

    Hey, a good bottle of wine, some great cheese, fruit and good company are all I need for a romantic evening...especially the feeding it to each other part!

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  25.   yoby says:
    Posted: 06 Sep 06

    well, anything , even an easy one, made with love, care and attention is worth to be done and shows much more then 1000 words...

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