The leaves are changing, there is a slight chill in the air, and the days are getting shorter… all telltale signs that Fall is upon us. In the blink of an eye it went from long, hot summer days to sweater weather (my favourite kind of weather by the way!) And if you’ve taken a look at a calendar recently you would have notice that Thanksgiving is a mere 2 weeks away!
Now I’ve done every type of Thanksgiving out there: the “last minute rush to pull it all together.” The “week of planning and extravagant decor.” The “show up at a relative’s house, sit back and take it all in.” And even the “I’m not going.” (yeah, that last one didn’t go over very well with the fam!).
When it comes to the food, the appetizer course is where I shine. I am not one who believes guests should be searching their pockets and purses for stowed away candies to tide them over until dinner! There is no such thing as ruining your appetite at Thanksgiving… I want my guests to leave my house with the top button of their pants undone.
So for my appetizer course this year I am opting for something that is not only easy for me to pull together but is fun for everyone I’m entertaining…. and nothing says easy and fun like a Thanksgiving Charcuterie Board!
Ok, I know what you’re thinking… “Charcuterie Board? I have no idea how to pronounce that, let alone build one for an appetizer course!” Don’t you worry, I wouldn’t suggest it if it wasn’t easy!
How to Build a Thanksgiving Charcuterie Board
Variety is key when it comes to building the perfect board. Not only do you want a variety of foods, you want a variety of flavours and textures. Meat, cheese, fruit, mustards, pickles, jams, crackers and nuts are just a few common items I like to include on my boards:
Meat // I tend to go for meats like sausage, kielbasa, prosciutto, spicy genoa and mortadella. Sometimes I’ll add something soft and rich like a pâté to even out the saltiness from the cured meats.
Cheese // I could easily go overboard on the cheese, but I tend to stick to brie, gorgonzola or blue, smoked gouda, goat chevre, and an aged cheddar.
Spreads // Adding spreads can help to enhance the flavours of the meat and cheese. Opt for spreads like dijon mustards, bacon marmalade, fig jam and even hummus or bean dips.
Crackers // Something has to hold all this meaty, cheesy goodness! I like to play around with the textures here offering up crunchy crisps and soft sliced baguettes. Just make sure the flavours of the crackers aren’t to strong, you don’t want to overpower the main attraction!
Fruit // While the main attraction is the meat and cheese, I like to add some fruit for sweetness! Concord grapes, plums, pears and apples are wonderful seasonal options for a Thanksgiving board… and the colours really pop!
Pickles, Olives, Etc // Every board needs something that is a little briny. I like to include gherkins, pickles, stuffed olives and marinated artichokes. Other items you can add include dark chocolate and roasted nuts.
The Tools // Depending on how many guests you are hosting this board might be big or small. Arranging several boards on a table is also a great option. Serving bowls are also a good idea for things like the condiments and spreads. Don’t forget the little forks, knives and spreaders!
Tips // Build your boards and then place in the fridge until you are ready to serve. Don’t let charcuterie stand for more than two hours. Keep cut up meats and cheeses in the fridge to allow for quick and easy replenishment.
See, I told you it would be easy! Now that I’ve whet your appetite for everything Thanksgiving, get ready to hop along to the next bloggers participating in this Thanksgiving blog feast!
- Erica of Everything Mom and Baby: Side Dish
- Marcella of Hey Modest Macre: Side Dish
- Christine of Amidst the Chaos: Main Dish
- Brooke of Brooklyn Berry Designs: Dessert
Disclosure: This post was in partnership with Wayfair Canada. As always, all thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.