From Instagram influencers to home chefs, everyone seems to be talking about charcuterie boards these days. But what exactly is a Charcuterie board and how do you make one? Learn all about it in this article as we explore the basics of Charcuterie boards and how you can create your own.Â
What exactly is the charcuterie board? If you arenât already familiar with it, the word âcharcuterieâ may come off as pompous and inaccessible to you at first. However, charcuterie is something that appeals to people who enjoy foods like pepperoni, cheese and hot dogs. A variety of meats, typically fruits, nuts, crackers, and dips, are arranged in a aesthetially pleasing manner on a board and are surrounded by other foods that are well balanced with each other. This type of board is called a charcuterie board. There are numerous variations of charcuterie boards that may be seen all around the world.
Types of Charcuterie Boards you can make at home:Â
Whole Muscle Meat Board
Whole muscle meats include things like prosciutto, Jamon Iberico, Italian-style speck, and Jamon Serrano. Curing whole cuts of meat (often the leg) with salt, air, and time makes the meat safe to eat without being cooked beforehand. When compared to dry-cured salami, in which the meat is pulverised prior to the curing process, whole-muscle meats can be distinguished by the ribbons of fat and muscle that run through them.
Unlike other types of charcuterie, such as salami and ham, these meats need to be cooked before being eaten. Sausage makers used to combine the remaining meat and any remaining organs with salt and spices before stuffing the resulting combination into the sanitised intestinal lining. Although âseeing how the sausage is createdâ might not sound appealing to the average consumer, this method of meat storage is an excellent example of nose-to-tail eating.
The cooked meats family includes several of our favourite deli meats, such as prosciutto cotto (cotto is Italian for âcookedâ), ham, roast turkey, and pastrami. Before being cooked, these meats are frequently brined. You wouldnât find these meats on a charcuterie board, but theyâre wonderful on a sandwich.
The most well-known pÃ¢tÃ© is perhaps the mousse made from foie gras, however pÃ¢tÃ© actually encompasses a wide variety of roasted meats, including liver. Some pÃ¢tÃ©s are finely mashed into a mousse, while others are more roughly chopped, resembling a free-form sausage. PÃ¢tÃ© de Campagne, on the more coarsely ground end of the pÃ¢tÃ© spectrum, is a fan favourite.
Dry-cured meats include soppressata, finocchiona, and pepperoni (salame picante in Italian). Sausage is made by stuffing ground pig with salt and spices into natural or synthetic casings and curing it. Many European salamis have been around for a long time, and the seasonings used are just those that are native to the area.
You can always custom build your Charcuterie Board
The greatest charcuterie boards, like the best cheese boards, have a wide range of meats and cheeses, as well as a variety of condiments. Even though a cheese board and a charcuterie board arenât exactly the same thing, including some cheese on a charcuterie board is a great idea. Jamon Serrano and Manchego are delicious together, while a Calabrian chilli salami goes wonderfully with a hickory-smoked cheddar. To determine which cheeses go best with your charcuterie, look to the country of origin of the salami. If youâre serving Finocchiona salami, which has its roots in Tuscany, pair it with a Tuscan cheese, such as Pecorino Toscano. Chianti, also from Tuscany, is a great choice to drink alongside your Finocchiona.
You can even get creative and create your Indian street food inspired board by including a white range of snacks and sweets. Go creativity, no rules apply here.Â
Now that we have told you about the different charcuterie boards, try the different variants of it and look for the one which suits you the best. Charcuterie boards are the best for the people who have a love for eating in large quantities and love to taste a lot of food items at once. Try it!