It's Haute Char-couture!
Updated: Sep 30, 2020
Grab your BOARD'ing Pass because we are going to FRANCE!
Fashioned by design, a stylish French charcuterie and fromage board that captures the beauty, the flowers and the romance of France!
...and welcome to the first in my travel series - A Board'ing Pass to food destinations.
Each week I will be building a charcuterie board that is filled with all the cheeses, meats and accompaniments that reflect the cuisine of a specific country.
What better place to start but in France where the term 'charcuterie' all began.
So, grab your board'ing pass as we take off to FRANCE!
Plateau de charcuterie et fromage
When we hear the word 'charcuterie', our first thoughts are of a grand wooden board filled with an abundance of meats, cheeses and accompaniments ready to be devoured. However, charcuterie in France takes on a whole different meaning.
Pronounced: "shaar-koo-tr-ee"; French for: 'chair' (flesh) and 'cuit' (cooked)
In 15th century France, charcuterie was a term used to describe shops that sold products made of smoked pork and fish, long before cured meats were sold.
In the 13th century, cheese was termed "fromage". France has more than1200 varierties of cheeses. There is no denying that French cheese is as famous as France itself.
In France, 'plateau de charcuterie et fromage' is served and consist of the following:
Charcuterie: jambon, saucisson, pate, terrine, rillettes
Fromage: comte, brie, camembert, roquefort
Bread: baguette (bread only, no crackers)
Accompaniment: cornichons, pickled onions, olives, nuts
Fruits: red grapes, blueberries, strawberries, figs
Spreads: honey, dijon mustard, fig chutney
For our board, we are going to take some creative allowances to build...
A Stylish French Charcuterie Board
It was the summer of 2000, when I went to Paris. Studying fashion design in my youth, it was a dream come true when I had the opportunity to spend two weeks in Paris. How I long to go back and take more time to explore the other cities of France, but this must wait. Therefore, building a French style platter at home, purchasing cheeses and meats imported from France is the next best thing to being there.
When designing the French charcuterie board, I not only did I want to incorporate the foods that France is known for, but I wanted the board to reflect the beautiful things that France has to offer - the abundance of flowers - roses, the fashion - haute couture and the romance - love!
Serving: 4 - 8 people
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Charcuterie: 5 slices of Jambon de Paris
18 Salami Rounds
Cheese: 1 Breakfast Brie
1 x Le Pico Goat Cheese - Fromagerie Germain
Bread: Artisan Baguette
Mini Toasted Baguettes
Fruits: Pink Lady Apples
Mini Honey Jar
Sweets: Assorted Macarons
Haute Char-couture Layout
Begin with approximately a 13" paddle board or a round platter
Step 1: Place a small bowl to the right side of your paddle board (I used a Le Creuset Mini Cocotte - keeping with the French theme)
Step 2: Place your already made Salami Roses x 3 in the center of your paddle board. Take your Jamon de Paris, at this time you can create ruffles by pinching the center of the Jamon de Paris and letting the edges ever so slightly drape onto your hand, fluffing it into a ruffle. Place the pinched center of the Jamon down onto your board - left side of your paddle. Repeat for all pieces of Jamon de Paris.
Step 3: Using the base of the goat cheese box, place your French Goat Cheese ( Le Pico Goat Cheese - Fromagerie Germain) on top. Add your Breakfast Brie, as shown.
Step 4: Top with your sliced figs on the Le Pico Goat Cheese and your Strawberry flower on your Breakfast Brie.
Step 5: Your small jar of honey beside the Brie (honey + brie = happiness!)
Step 6: Slice an Artisan Baguette and place the slices on the right side of your paddle board.
*French Etiquette: It is custom to serve a baguette with French cheeses and not crackers!
Step 7: At the top of your paddle board, add a cluster of red grapes and your strawberry fans at the base of the Jamon de Paris.
Step 8: Fill with Mini Toasted Baguettes beside the honey.
Step 9: Group fresh cherries between the Jamon de Paris and your Salami Roses.
Step 10: Add your apple heart beside the cherries. Place blackberries on your cheeses.
Step 11: Fill your bowl with cornichons and olives.
Step 12: Add microgreens and your assorted macarons.
It's so fashionable!
If your like me and love the little wooden boxes that your soft cheeses are packaged in, then why treat yourself to a 'Petite Char-couture' because a serving for one can is very fashionable!
Bon Appetite and Au revoir
until next time...
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