Avoid Deli Boredom – Ohio Ag Net
By Shelly Detwiler, berry grower and dietitian
Charcuterie shär-koo͞″tə-rē′ If you haven’t had the pleasure of enjoying a charcuterie, then I think it’s high time you did. Sounds fancy, doesn’t it? I heard it’s today’s Lunchables, but the deli trumps the Lunchables! They are similar in that they include small bites of meat and cheese, but that’s where the similarities end. Charcuterie is easy to assemble, colorful, full of textures, flavors and downright full of fun. They encourage grazing, talking, drinking, and lots of laughter in between. Exactly what we need after a few years of ‘Vid.
Where did all this delicious trend come from? The story goes that during the Roman Empire, the process of drying meats to extend their “shelf life” was invented. Did they have shelves back then? It’s only 15e Century France when the Charcutier Guilds were created. The Webrestaurant.com blog indicates that Charcutier is French for cook who prepares meat. These guilds were created and charcuterie became the art of preparing and assembling cured, cured and cured meats, and the rest is history.
Today’s deli meats have taken on a life of their own. They can be simple or elaborate works of art. Trending searches on Google, Pinterest and even Aldi promote all kinds of themed charcuterie such as chocolate, pancakes and seafood platters beyond the traditional cheeses, meats, nuts, fruits and olives. Aldi even has a deli board! Can you believe that? This team put together a report predicting the hottest charcuterie board trends for 2022. They suggest the top 6 charcuterie trends include wellness, salad, fries, marinated platters, side dishes kids (i.e. homemade lunches) and the drum roll please… Melted cheese!!! It’s something Paul can really pull off and the perfect way to celebrate June Dairy Month!
Deli meats are easy to create on your own, and the first place to start is the base your bites can sit on. Traditional bases are made of wood and bamboo in all shapes, sizes and finishes. Popular shapes can be round, square with indents, rectangular, or paddle-shaped. Different finishes can be found with a rustic feel and a lively edge. More eclectic bases include marble, slate, recycled wine bottles, and even very elegant agate planks. There are even longer boards up to 3ft for a titanic sized centerpiece for bigger crowds. My personal favorite is an Ohio cutting board which is perfect for a small traditional charcuterie. I also have a piece of antique boat tower that I can use for large crowds. The sky is the limit for finding what matches your personality and style.
Next…choose a theme. Seriously, Aldi and Pinterest have a crazy number of cool ideas for themes. The next step is to start organizing. A traditional board in your driveway? Sarah Crawford on Aldi Board of Charcuterie encourages you to “follow the 3, 3, 3, 3 rule: 3 cheeses, 3 meats, 3 starches and 3 sweets for a better board”. Aldi’s Roselynn Daniels suggests focusing the color palette and seasonal colors and flavors in your board. You can even find an illustrated menu on Aldis.com to follow or try Webrestaurant.com for more step-by-step instruction on creating the perfect charcuterie.
Charcuterie may sound fancy, but it’s just a platter of dishes and a theme of your choice on artistic steroids. Try! No matter what style and theme you choose, your charcuterie will be a hit at your next gathering this summer. In June, place dairy and the plethora of cheese flavors at the center of your charcuterie board. Celebrate Ohio Dairy!
Eat well and healthily,
Here are some themed charts from Eatingwell.com/Aldi.com to get you started
Wellness boards can be themed with health in mind, such as Weight Watcher points, vegan, all veg/fruit boards. Add a few nuts to add a variety of textures and flavors
Salad boards are a salad bar on a board. Greens, salad toppings and don’t forget the cheese and bacon! Adjust it and make vegetable planks. Perfect time for the summer months when you can pack them with lots of bites of seasonal produce with yogurt dips and low-fat cheeses.
Processed cheese Who doesn’t love processed cheese? Whether you opt for pots of cheese fondue or ramekins of mini grilled cheese sandwiches, this trend is all cheesy at its most gooey. Just about anything can be dipped in melted cheese: vegetables, crackers, fresh bread, fruit, bacon and more. The sky really is the limit.
Home pickling has become a trend in kitchens nationwide. It’s easier than ever to pack a board with an array of pickled vegetables or fruits. Whether you’re trying to pickle at home or picking up a few different options from the store, you really can’t go wrong with this trend!
French fries boards
Who doesn’t love fries? Built for a crowd, this trend is designed for fries lovers. Whether you opt for fries, waffles, wedges, tater tots, curly fries, sweet potatoes or veggies, fries will be everywhere on serving boards in 2022. We love the idea of laying out a variety of fries and sauces (along with a few other healthier options, of course) for your next game-day gathering.
Sometimes kids need a little extra inspiration to get their imaginative minds soaring, and the shaped boards of fruits, vegetables, cheese, deli wraps and mini sandwiches will be everywhere. Prepare your lunch with
Try this rainbow bento box for kids.
Pancake Charcuterie Board
Pancakes: Let’s start with the obvious! You need a great pancake recipe for your pancake board. Try the traditional buttermilk pancakes or other savory cakes like brown sugar oatmeal pancakes and carrot cake pancakes.
Eggs: Fill your breakfast tray with a healthy serving of scrambled eggs. This is one of the easiest ways to serve eggs for a group.
Breakfast meats: No pancake breakfast is complete without a few strips of crispy bacon or breakfast sausage.
Fruit: To make a full breakfast, be sure to fill in the gaps on your board with fresh fruit like blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, and banana slices. The fruit can be eaten on its own or used as a filling for pancakes.
Toppings: Syrups (like classic maple syrup and homemade strawberry syrup), jam, and whipped cream can turn simple pancakes into delicious in a snap. We’ve also added bowls of Nutella, chocolate chips, peanut butter and cubed butter to our platter for a decadent selection of pancake toppings.
Chocolate Charcuterie Board
Pepperidge Farm Pirouette French Vanilla Cream Filled Wafers
Nutella Chocolate Hazelnut Spread
Melting dark chocolate wafers Ghirardelli
Almonds finely dipped in chocolate
Smash Mallow Dark Chocolate Covered Raspberry Marshmallows
Snappers Caramel Clusters with Sea Salt and Dark Chocolate
Ghirardelli Caramel and White Chocolate Squares
Brookside Dark Chocolate Pomegranate
Justin’s Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
Snack Factory Pretzel Chips Dark Chocolate
Voortman chocolate wafers
1-2 16oz. packets of fresh strawberries
Once your board is filled, serve and enjoy!