When people talk about soirees and dinner parties, the first images that come to mind are five-course meals, steaks, and sparkling wines. Delectable dishes that require organizers to spend money and time are also top-of-mind choices. More often than not, charcuterie boards are just on the sideline, acting as hors d’oeuvres or appetizers.
But if you expand your horizons and let creativity rule, you will realize that charcuterie boards can also become centerpieces of any celebrations. You can even create a party that revolves around it! One great thing about boards that contain cold cuts and cheeses is that they’re flexible, and they can please just about anyone. It’s also easy to make, and mixing and matching the meats and cheeses are even exciting. Got no time? You can simply go to the local deli and buy a ready-made board.
If you’re planning a charcuterie party, make sure that it will be super! Below are some of the tips that you may want to keep in mind:
Pick your supplies
If you want to start your charcuterie board from scratch, get your supplies right. Although cheeseboards are not necessary (because you can use plates and glass surfaces), you may want to get one. Cheeseboards will make your platter more attractive; get them online or from your local supermarket.
To make your table much more appealing, you should have a table runner. For that rustic appeal, a roll of mailing paper or brown craft sheet will do the trick. These may even serve as the surface where you can directly lay out your cheeses and meats. Don’t forget the wine glasses, knives, honey dippers, and cutlery. For more inspiration, check out Pinterest.
What you should include in your board
Your charcuterie platter should be varied, and it must have range. Basically, you have three layers to incorporate: mild, medium, sharp (or bold). Looking at these three levels of taste or flavors should help you pick the right choices of meats and cheeses. You can have salami and pepperoni for the mild and medium categories, and some prosciutto slices for the sharp and bold category. For cheeses, Cream Havarti, Leicester, and gouda are among your best bets for the mild and medium layer. For sharp cheeses, aged cheddar and blue cheese can be your best choice.
Add texture to the mix by including nuts and dried fruits. You can have pistachios, almonds, walnuts, and pecans. For dried fruits, dried dates, peaches, and apricots make great choices. You can also balance out the sharpness of cheeses by adding jams and sweet pretzels. Don’t forget breads and soda crackers to cleanse your palate.
What about the drinks?
There are two routes to choose from when it comes to this category. If you’re hosting a much more casual event, then no doubt, beers will make a good pick. But if you want to have that more formal and social vibe, you can serve wines. It’s important that you have a range of drinks, so your guests can easily mix and match their cold cuts and cheeses with the right beverage flavor.
Prep your home
Of course, your home needs to be prepped and spruced up. If you have enough time, have your home cleaned by professionals; you may even have to call in a pest exterminator to keep your home free of embarrassing tenants. Decorate the kitchen based on your chosen theme.
While charcuterie party heavily features cold cuts, cheeses, and spirits, you need to remember that the main course will be the stories and laughs that you and your guests will share. So, keep the atmosphere light and have fun!