Creating the Perfect Charcuterie Platter

“Charcuterie (shahr-cute-uh-ree) is a French word for any smoked, dry-cured, or cooked meat. This category includes favorites like bacon, ham, pâté and sausages; and more esoteric items like terrines, rillettes, galantines and duck confit .”

For over 30 years, the team at D’Artagnan has been creating charcuterie from all natural ingredients. So we decided to ask the pros how to create the perfect board at home.

Just like a cheese board, a charcuterie platter is ideal to serve at a party. Preparation can take little to no time and is a great way to impress your guests.

Arranging a charcuterie board is easy. It should have a range of items representing the various styles of preparation from cooked to dry-cured. The key is to represent a few styles, flavors and textures on your platter. Cooked meats like pâté ; dry-cured meats like ham , cured sausage; smoked meats like duck breast;  and something spreadable like mousse or rillettes.

The meats should be complemented by something acidic, like cornichons (tiny French pickles) or whole-grain mustard; and pair well with grapes, figs, pears, nuts, apples, and olives. Serve with a rustic country bread, or good quality, crackers.  

Pro Tips:

  1. Contrasting flavors and textures allow for each item to be vastly different and create more variation.
  2. Slice the meat cold, serve room temperature. If the meat is cold, it will be more firm and allow a knife to pass through easily. Also, slice as thin as possible
  3. Appeal is half the meal! Invest in a good tray to serve the course on. It doesn’t have to cost a fortune, but it is recommended that you use slate or wood boards to serve a charcuterie board.
  4. Pair with Côtes-du-Rhône or Madiran

Try these:

  1. D’ARTAGNAN’S Wild Boar Saucisson, Dried Sausage is killer on any charcuterie board. This is a dense dried pork sausage packed with a peppery seasoning that adds a unique flavor to your charcuterie board. Pair it with a sharp milk cheese like the Pyrenees Prebis, black truffle butter, olives, and an airy baguette.
  2. D’ARTAGNAN’S Traditional Saucisson Sec Dried Sausage and fresh Parmesan are great together. Parmesan is a sharp cheese that complements the Traditional Saucisson.  The traditional saucisson is similar to salami and adds a necessary element to any charcuterie board. This goes great with fresh figs, sweet and spicy nuts, and crispy flatbread.
  3. D’ARTAGNAN’S Mousse Truffée pairs nicely with a soft, creamy cheese like Brie. The subtle and creamy flavors in the Brie enhance the unique flavors in the Mousse Trufée. Fresh sliced pear and balsamic reduction make perfect additions.
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