Can you pronounce that word? Do you know what it is? Let the education begin…
According to Merriam Webster, charcuterie is a noun, char·cu·te·rie \ (ˌ)shär-ˌkü-tə-ˈrē \ and is defined as a delicatessen specializing in dressed meats and meat dishes; also: the products sold in such a shop.
Many weekends, regardless of the season, Chip and I look to have a light fare lunch or mid-afternoon snack to compliment the wine that we so long to consume on these lazy afternoons. A Charcuterie covers all the bases. Here is what our charcuterie looks like:
- Prosciutto, Soppressata, or pepperoni if all else fails. Some hard salamis have a wine flavor to them such as Pinot Grigio or Cabernet.
- Cheeses- at least one goat cheese, an Italian cheese like Fontinella, Manchego, and maybe a spread of some sort.
- Nuts such as almonds, walnuts or candied pecans/cashews
- Figs, grapes and/or a hot pepper jelly
- Hard pretzels with mustard
- Pickles, olives or perhaps some olive tapenade
- Pesto to spread on the warm bread
- Artichoke hearts or roasted peppers
- Stuffed pepper poppers (I can give the recipe at a later time)
- A warm and crusty baguette
- If no bread, then a plain water cracker or flat bread
- Dark cholate broken into thin pieces compliments the red wine and crusty bread. Ok, what am I saying? Chocolate is great at any time. No excuse needed.
…… do you see where we have added the Italian influence on this French plate? Being the cheese freak that I am, I could never create such a work of art without cheese, and with at least four variations. The meats cannot stand alone.
Man does not stand alone without cheese.
This can be used on a large board for an appetizer for a group or on a smaller platter for an intimate tryst for two. Wine is the perfect accompaniment and it is totally up to you and your palate. I prefer Prosecco or a Riesling. Chip loves the reds, hearty and warm. The choice does vary by season and location.
Go ahead and try it and make it your own. There is no right or wrong answer, but you must say the name correctly, so practice. It makes it sound like you slaved all day to create it. Buon appetito!