One of the best things about this time of year is gathering with friends and family. One of the worst things? Cooking and cleaning. Wouldn’t it be amazing if there was a way to put out an impressive spread without spending the entire afternoon preparing and the whole evening in the kitchen? There’s no need to hire a personal chef.
The secret to awe inspiring (and super easy) party fare is the charcuterie board.
Building a charcuterie and cheese board is as fun as it is effortless. Grab your shopping list and get ready to take your taste buds on an adventure. We broke down the basics so you can spend your holiday season connecting with friends over a glass of wine, instead of trying to tackle a new recipe over your stove.
Choose your board
The board sets the scene for the masterpiece you are about to bestow upon your guests. Therefore, you must choose wisely. Cheese and charcuterie should be displayed on a surface that is large enough to accommodate your excellent taste, as well as sturdy enough to carry all that goodness without risk of collapse.
We believe it’s more fun to choose a board that suits your style.
If modern design is your thing, try a charcuterie board that is a chic blend of marble and wood. Do you believe a home is at its best when it’s full of friends? Then try a board that is shaped like a pineapple, a symbol of hospitality and welcome.
If practicality is at the top of your priority list, consider slate options. You can easily label it with chalk, so your guests know what they’re eating.
In the interest of any dietary restrictions that may be present at the party, it’s also a good idea to have a small board around for any varieties or spreads that you may wish to keep separate from the others.
Choose your cheese and charcuterie
This is the fun part! A charcuterie board is at its best when there’s a wide variety of meats and cheeses that complement each other. For example, putting a creamy brie next to an aged cheddar allows for plenty of conversation and taste-testing.
A well-rounded selection of charcuterie and cheeses may include some of these, but feel free to experiment!
– Fresh Mozzarella – soft, creamy, and delicious.
– Aged Cheddar – for the guests who like their cheese as sharp as their wit.
– Gruyère – a mild and salty crowd-pleaser.
– Brie – creamy and luxuriously delicious.
– Roquefort – not for the faint of heart, this strong blue has some serious bite.
– Prosciutto – thinly sliced ham, rich and salty.
– Capicola – a spiced and smoked traditional antipasto.
– Hot Sopressata – spicy and feisty cured salami.
Choose your accompaniments
The same way your favorite outfit needs some well-chosen accessories, a charcuterie board isn’t complete without complimentary flavors. Make sure to have some slices of fresh, rustic bread on hand, as well as crackers. Bonus points if you include gluten free options! Olives and fruit balance flavors, while making the board look like a piece of edible art. Spicy mustards and chutneys are always a hit, as well as buttery pine nuts and roasted almonds.
There you have it! Charcuterie boards are the no-fuss party fare you’ve been waiting for. Happy hosting!