A well-designed charcuterie board can be the centerpiece of any gathering, potluck, or Instagram post. And one of the people turning these spreads into a lucrative social media career is Marissa Mullen, the brains behind the Instagram account That Cheese Plate. In her book That Cheese Plate Will Change Your Life, Mullen teaches readers how to turn piles of cheese, nuts, crackers, fruits, and meats into eye-popping works of delicious art for every occasion.
Mullen goes by her so-called "cheese by numbers" method, which attaches a numeral to each component on a standard cheese board: 1 for cheese, 2 for meat, 3 for produce, 4 for crunch, 5 for dip, and 6 for garnish. This is the backbone for how Mullen blueprints each new board layout.
The book itself features beautiful and illustrative photographs, diagrams, and drawings with ideas for over 50 cheese plates. Some emphasize savory meats and salty crackers, while others are heavy on sweet berries, grapes, and figs. You'll also find a cheese cutting guide and advice on how to use plant-based ingredients for your spread.
For Mullen, cheese plates go beyond a form of food or entertainment—she sees making these boards as a form of self-care. "I know, cheese plate influencer, it’s so funny. For me, making a cheese plate was my way of just calming down after a stressful work week," Mullen told Eater. And while this dairy-filled form of creative expression may look complicated, Mullen uses this book to break the methods down easily so you can have the confidence to build your own cheese plate geared toward your tastes.
You can find the book on Amazon for $16.