What's cooking this week: grazing boards are 2021's most gorgeous food trend

Our food editor creates a beautiful food board inspired by the Feast of Saint Valentine

11 February 2021 - 08:56
The Feast of Saint Valentine was the inspiration behind this food board which features a mix of sweet treats and savoury snacks.
The Feast of Saint Valentine was the inspiration behind this food board which features a mix of sweet treats and savoury snacks.
Image: Christoph Hoffman

The wonderful thing about food is all the new discoveries around it. Just when you think an ingredient is one thing, you turn around and it can be another.

Who’d believe that chocolate could be roasted to intensify its flavour? Or that baking feta cheese would result in a pasta sauce becoming a TikTok sensation? (Check out our review of this viral #bakedfetapasta recipe.)

Another trend that has taken off online are grazing boards. The concept is similar to a charcuterie board, but you needn’t be limited to a single food genre like meat or cheese. Consider the platter a blank canvas: it’s all about artistically arranging tasty titbits to create a visual feast.

Photographer Christoph Hoffman and I used homemade pancakes (get the recipe) as a starting point for the grazing board pictured here; they form the perfect divide between the sweet and savoury elements we included.

The beauty of a food board is the ease of preparation. As there’s no recipe, it can be rustled up with whatever you have on hand or fresh, seasonal ingredients take your fancy. 

Served with a choice of dips and spreads — think flavoured cream cheeses, hummus or even chocolate spread — it’s a social dish to share at any time of day or any meal. It’s great for picnics and, yes, for Valentine’s Day too.

Here’s what else has been cooking in the world of food, wine — and my kitchen — this week: