Part appetizer, part social media post.
They're all over Instagram and TikTok for a good reason. When done right, a charcuterie board is a creative way to feed a crowd with a dizzying array of meat, cheese, and snacks.
The best things in life are cheese...— Vis a Vis Wine Bar (@visavisoakbay) August 12, 2020
Try our Charcuterie board with local meats & cheese. #meatandcheese #charcuterie #meat #cheese #eatlocal #wine #winepairing #datenight #latenight #visavisoakbay pic.twitter.com/wpnN2VQk88
Here's a simple tutorial for putting together your own impressive display. The surprising thing about making one is that you don't have to break the bank to come up with something really lovely.
Start with an interesting base for all your goodies. I used an 11-inch bamboo platter, but any platter, large plate, or even a cutting board will do. Select two or three good cheeses and put those down as your main focal points. The ones pictured are St. Angel Triple Creme Brie, an aged French Brie, and a Double Gloucester with chives. Leave creamy cheeses whole and cut firm cheeses into slices.
I would have only gotten two cheeses, but the St. Angel was a small remnant piece for under $2. Make sure you look around for inexpensive finds like that. You can even just get a few thick slices of something interesting from the deli counter.
All the meats ...
Either get a nice assortment at the deli (sliced thin) or purchase a mixed pack of nibbly cold cuts. You'll want about 3-5 slices per person in total. What you see here came in a flat pack of prosciutto, salami, and cappicola for about $6. Round meats like the salami can be folded in half and then quarters, then arranged together to make a sort of ruffle. The prosciutto just gets lightly rolled into a loose, scrunchy rosette.
If you have them, small pickles like cornichons or even sliced dill pickles are a great addition when serving salty cuts of meat.
Carbs, carbs, and more carbs!
You're going to need a basic platform for all of those goodies, and you can't go wrong with plain water crackers. Choose a second option like the pretzel thins, some crisp flatbread, or sliced French bread. For a slight change of pace, finish by adding something sweet like the crunchy banana chips.
Something fresh will cleanse the palate.
To keep it from being too heavy, cucumber slices, radishes, grapes, or berries all make great additions to a charcuterie board. You need a crispy, refreshing break every now and then. Make sure to cover any bare spots, and bring in additional pops of color if you can.
That's all there is to it! You can create a beautiful charcuterie board like this in just four easy steps. The next time you're in the mood to graze, give it a try. Don't forget to add some wine!
*The photos in this article are by Sarina Petrocelly.
Do you have a favorite charcuterie board item or technique? Let us know in the comments!