Charcuterie (shaar-koo-tr-ee), as hard as it may be to pronounce, is a form of art that can be achieved at any skill level. Originating from a French term devoted to prepared pork products, these boards can now be found at many restaurants around the country.
Allow your board to tell a story as your guests graze and experience different flavors. The best part about this experience is that it is completely tailored to your taste and the preferences of your guests. There are no rules and no right or wrong way to make your board.
Step 1: Gather and prep your ingredients
Serving as the presentation base, a board or plate of any size or shape will do the trick. Bamboo, slate, wood, and marble are a few options to choose from.
Prep all your ingredients in advance. Cutting, rinsing, and organizing your food will make for quick and easy arrangement before a gathering.
Place 2-3 tiny bowls on the board before adding any food. These will be used for dips, sauces and other fun ingredients.
Step 2: Cheese
Include cheese of all textures. Ranging from soft to hard some fan-favorites include brie, mozzarella, cheddar and parmesan.
Cheese can be sliced and diced in all sorts of ways, so get creative and make sure to spread them out on your board.
Step 3: Meat
Meat and cheese are your largest ingredients so it’s important to place those on the board around your bowls before anything else. A few examples are a prosciutto, salami and summer sausage.
When choosing cheese and sausage aim for a minimum of two different options.
Step 4: Crackers
The next biggest item on your board will be your crackers, bread and pretzels. Plain crackers pair well with almost everything, making them the perfect go-to.
Step 5: Fruit
Berries, grapes and pomegranate seeds add the perfect pop of color to make your board festive for the holidays.
Step 6: Vegetables
Vegetables are completely optional, but another fun way to sneak in some healthy bite sized snacks.
Mini sliced cucumbers and cherry tomatoes pair perfectly with hummus and are delicious on their own.
Step 7: Dips and sauces
This is where those tiny bowls come into play. Based on your meat and cheese selections, add items like honey, hummus, olive oil, pickled vegetables or olives.
Step 8: Garnish and decorate
My final and favorite step…garnish and decorate!
Include dark chocolate to add some sweetness, garnish with rosemary and sprinkle with pomegranate seeds.
All these little add-ins will bring even more color and depth to your board.
Impress everyone with your homemade charcuterie board this year - have fun with it and let your creativity run wild!