As many of you know I spent over a decade in the classroom as an elementary school teacher. And while I am no longer working in that environment my love of teaching never waned. Lately, I have been searching for a way to combine my love of teaching and learning with my myriad interests. This gave way to a recent class I held at my home. Our goal was to create a fun learning experience where we could create and share in a welcoming non-judgemental atmosphere. We kicked this off with a class about the extremely popular charcuterie board.
I would like to introduce my friend Chef Summer, who led the class.
A few girlfriends came over and we set up a little lesson plan, and I bought everyone their own little charcuterie boards. Chef Summer walked us through the components of a charcuterie board while we nibbled and took note, it was SO much fun! Below I have included the notes from her lesson for you to use to create your own perfect board!
This is the French term for preparing cold meats. Traditionally pork. However, modern variations of the word differ slightly and we often used interchangeably to describe a course consisting of assorted meats paired with accouterments.
France – Charcuterie, Italy – Salumi, America – We say both
While the original French translation refers to pork, modern charcuterie boards can include a variety of ingredients:
Beef: Bresaola, Roast Beef, Beef Salami, Beef Jerky, Beef Pate
Duck & Goose: Duck Prosciutto, Duck Rillettes, Confit, Mousse, Dry-cured duck saucisson
Chicken & Turkey: Pate, Smoked Turkey, Chicken Sausage
Vegan: Plant-Based Deli Meats, Vegan Sausages, Lentils, Tamari Soaked Mushrooms, Tofurkey, Soyrizo
Start with the “Why”
The why will be your guide to choosing the components of your charcuterie board. (Bridal Shower, Summer Picnic, Holiday Party, Wine or Beer Pairing)
Build upon your why: The power of threes, and start big!
Soft: Brie, Mozzarella or Burrata , Humboldt Fog
Semi-soft: Gouda, Jarlsberg or Swiss, Stilton
Semi-hard: Manchengo, Provolone, Cheddar
Hard: Parmesan, Aged Asiago, Mimolette
Bringing it all together:
The key to a GREAT charcuterie board is having a balance of flavors and textures.
Sweet: Honey, Fresh Fruit, Jams & Compotes, Dark Chocolate, Dried Fruit
Salty: Olives, Salted Popcorn, Salted Nuts & Seeds, Pickled Vegetables
Savory: Seasonal Vegetables, Cherry Tomatoes, Artichoke Hearts, Stone-Ground Mustard
Crunchy: Nuts & Seeds, Sliced Baguette, Crackers
Different Plating Surfaces, Grazing Tables & Hors d’oeuvres, Garnishing with Herbs & Flowers
What do you think of this idea of making a girl’s night a learning experience as well? I have been toying with the idea of holding more of these type classes and opening them to the public. I would really appreciate any feedback! Also, if you make a charcuterie board and share it on Social, tag me!