Why is it that charcuterie boards are all the rage these days? They are trending in a big way on Pinterest and if you’ve glanced at any foodie’s Instagram feed, you’re likely to see a colorful board built of various finger foods.
The answer is simple — charcuterie boards are a fabulous way to serve others a beautifully assembled meal without cooking a single thing! Better yet, designing a charcuterie board is a blast because you’re literally playing with food to arrange it in an eye appealing way.
So, how do you know what items to source for your board? The key to building any savory charcuterie board is to think in categories when selecting the items to include: 1.) briny or acidic foods 2.) creamy and hard cheeses 3.) sliced deli meats. You want the items selected to complement each other in taste and texture. For example, pickles or artisan olives are a great follow to a rich cheese and cracker combination.
For my ultimate savory charcuterie board, I added another layer of interest. Some of my items are sourced from Kansas farmers or small food businesses while the others came mostly from Trader Joe’s. I’m passionate about supporting small business and several of the below mentioned companies were nice enough to gift me with their items.
What locally sourced gourmet foods could you add to your board?
I went BIG on this spread! The quantity of ingredients in this board could easily feed 2-4 people. We like to substitute a beautiful charcuterie platter for our usual dinner meal a couple Friday evenings a month because I don’t want to cook at the end of the week!
Here’s a rundown of the assorted items and where to buy them:
- Brioche Toasts (Trader Joe’s) covered in roasted garlic from Orie’s Farm Fresh
- Pita Bite Crackers (Trader Joe’s)
- Golden Rounds (Trader Joe’s)
- Great Value Rosemary Crackers (Walmart)
- Sliced Medium Cheddar (Walmart)
- Cream Cheese Spread mixed with Cajun Marinade from Kansas Flavor
- Honey Goat Cheese (Trader Joe’s) covered in Beesponsible Wildflower Honey
- The Laughing Cow Garlic & Herb Cheese (Walmart) topped with fresh baby dill
- Sliced White Cheddar (Private Selection from Kroger)
- Smoked Salmon Slices (Walmart)
- Salami (Trader Joe’s)
- Prosciutto (Trader Joe’s)
- Pepperoni (Trader Joe’s)
NUTS & CRUNCH:
- Salted Pistachios (Trader Joe’s)
- Toasted Corn Nuts (The Farris Wheel)
- Cheese Pizza Gourmet Popcorn (Kernel’s Popcorn Express)
FRUITS & VEGGIES:
- Pickles Brussel Sprouts (Urban Prairie)
- Sliced Tomatoes sprinkled with Smoked Garlic Salt (Orie’s Farm Fresh)
- Jalapeño Mustard (Urban Prairie)
- Fig Jam (Trader Joe’s)
- Blue Cheese Stuffed Olives (Trader Joe’s)
- Artichoke Hearts Segments (Trader Joe’s)
- Clementine Orange Segments
- Pink Lady Apple Slices
- Dried Cranberries
I recommend a dry red wine to enjoy with it such as a Cabernet Sauvignon. We sipped on 2018 Happy Camper while nibbling on the delightful spread.
In the market for a serving board? I used a bamboo cutting board and a pizza board with a handle, which worked perfectly!
While the specific items chosen for our charcuterie board appeal to us, you should customize your selection to your taste. It’s really just an excuse to try new gourmet foods paired with your tried and true favorites.
Have a delightful time shopping for ingredients and designing an epic board of your own!