Talk about SUCCULENT! You may have noticed the latest appetizer trend at bistros and dinner parties is the fancy-named Charcuterie (shahr-cute-uh-ree) board. But this is not a new thing – Charcuterie can be traced back to the first century in France as a variety of unrefrigerated meats, primarily from pork.
There’s several ways to put together this easy appetizer. Focus on a few meats such as prosciutto and salami, then add in cheese, pickles and spreads. I also like to add in grapes or thinly sliced apples for even more variety and texture. A quick trip to the deli counter and farmers market, and you’re ready to go.
I purchased a large butcher block board on Amazon like this one, and use it only for charcuterie. You can also use interesting baskets for bread, or additional smaller boards. Add in branches from a lemon tree, wild mint from the garden, or any edible plants you have growing in the yard such as a sprigs of rosemary or flowering nasturtiums. Think about color and contrast when developing your plate.
Here’s a quick list of ingredients you can use. Focus on about 6 – 8 items. Simple boards for smaller parties might just have 4 items. Stock up on olives, pickles, and other pantry-ready items, so you can put something together in a few minutes!
- Meats: Prosciutto, Salami, Mousse or Pate, Pepperoni
- Cheese: Hard Cheddar, Soft Brie, Goat Cheese Log, Spicy Swiss
- Bread: French Bread, Toasted Pita, Crackers, Toast Triangles
- Fruit and Vegetables: Grapes, Sliced Apple, Dried Apricots, Thin Sliced Radishes
- Pickles and Olives: Cornichon Pickles, Stuffed Jumbo Olives, Black Kalamata Olives
- Spreads: Whole Grain Mustard, Honey, Fig Jam
- Nuts: Spicy Almonds, Macadamia Nuts, Salted Cashews
This easy appetizer is super easy to assemble for any party. Use what you have on hand and make it simple! The most important thing is to have fun and make your Charcuterie Board your very own!
I love Bon Appetit magazine – it helps me to think outside the box and cook things with a little more flair and elegance. Cooking boxed mac and cheese for ten years can really shut you down. While thumbing through a recent issue, it was the photo of the whole cauliflower that caught my eye, not so much the recipe. Here was a whole roasted cauliflower prepared like I had never seen before. Because I am on a lighter diet, I changed it up, left out the sugar, and really modified the goat cheese dip, but it was such a treat! I served it with blackened tilapia and a green salad, a simple dinner but so amazing. You gotta try this!
Here’s my variation, but all the credit goes to Bon Appetit.
- 2 1/2 cups dry white wine
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes1 bay leaf
- 1 head of cauliflower, leaves removed
Goat Cheese Dip
- 4 ounces fresh goat cheese
- 4 – 6 tablespoons non-fat greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup non fat milk
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- Coarse sea salt (for serving)
Preheat oven to 475°. Bring wine, oil, kosher salt, juice, butter, red pepper flakes, bay leaf, and 8 cups water to a boil in a large pot. Add cauliflower, reduce heat, and simmer, turning occasionally, until a knife easily inserts into center, 15-20 minutes.
Using 2 slotted spoons or a mesh spider, transfer cauliflower to a rimmed baking sheet, draining well. Roast, rotating sheet halfway through, until brown all over, 30-40 minutes.
Goat Cheese Dip Assembly
While cauliflower is roasting, blend goat cheese, yogurt, milk, and oil in a small bowl until smooth; season with sea salt. Transfer cheese mixture to a serving bowl and drizzle with oil.
Transfer cauliflower to a plate. Drizzle with oil; sprinkle with sea salt. Serve with goat cheese sauce.
DO AHEAD: Whipped goat cheese can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; chill.
Read More http://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/2013/05/whole-roasted-cauliflower-with-whipped-goat-cheese#ixzz2TJP8eJv1