Creating a gorgeous charcuterie board couldn’t be easier—all you need is a wood plank, an assortment of meats, cheeses, crackers, and a clever eye!
The charcuterie board is the pinnacle of panache party platters and they’re so fun to make! For gardeners, a charcuterie board is a perfect opportunity to show off the fabulous foods you’ve cultivated, and we’ve got six sensational ideas to get you started.
Garden Inspired Charcuterie Boards
Creating a gorgeous charcuterie board couldn’t be easier—all you need is a wood plank, an assortment of meats, cheeses, crackers, and a clever eye. Arrange everything visually appealing, adding a few flourishes to add a little flair, and you’re ready to serve. Here are some ways to elevate your charcuterie board with beautiful, fresh edibles from your garden!
They’re tasty, bite-sized, and oh-so-beautiful! Edible flowers are a stellar addition to a decadent charcuterie board. Spread them throughout your party platter, and your charcuterie board spread will be Instagram-worthy in no time. You can even roll a cheese ball in flower petals—a major wow factor! Here are some of our favorite varieties:
- Pansies and violas
- Marigold petals
- Chive blossoms
Go the extra mile on your charcuterie board by adding some zucchini and onion blossoms that haven’t fully opened yet. Remove the anthers, stuff them with ricotta, dip them in tempura batter, and deep fry.
Assorted Pickles: Sweet, Salty, and Spicy!
Pickles are a classic staple for any charcuterie board, and the more options you have, the better. Several different veggies can be pickled for a satisfying crunch and tangy flavor. In addition to the standard mini cucumber pickle, here are some ideas for fancy charcuterie board pickles to try:
- Spicy pickled beans and asparagus
- Pickled daylily buds (yes, they’re edible!)
- Sweet sliced radish pickles
- Mini peppers
- Carrot sticks
- Sweet pickled beets or red onions
- Quick pickled summer squash
Place your pickles in little ramekins throughout your charcuterie board so the vinegar doesn’t seep into your other snacks!
Sweet and savory fruit spreads are perfect for balancing the flavor of pungent, aged cheeses on your charcuterie board. There are endless recipes online for simple, pectin-free spreads—it’s usually just a matter of simmering your chopped fruits for a few hours with water and sugar until they reduce and thicken. Here are some ideas to get you inspired:
- Blueberry and basil
- Strawberry balsamic
- Caramelized onion and fig
- Red or black currant
- Spicy peach and habanero pepper
Spoon out dollops of your fruit compotes throughout your charcuterie board. You can place them in tiny ramekins if they’re a bit runny.
Garlic Roasted Cherry Tomatoes
This recipe is an excellent substitute for those who don’t love olives. A multi-colored mix of cherry tomatoes will offer the most visual impact—reds, yellows, purples, and greens. Lay them out on a pan covered with parchment paper, drizzle with olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper, and toss in a few garlic cloves. Roast them in a 400° oven for 20 minutes, or until the tomatoes are blistered, and toss them in a ramekin for serving.
You can never go wrong with fancy butter on a crusty baguette slice. Herb-infused butter is simply irresistible. If you’ve got an electric mixer, you can make your fresh butter from scratch! Just whip some fresh whipping cream until the milk and fat separate, collect the fat, squeeze out the moisture, and voila! You have delicious homemade butter.
Add salt if you prefer salty butter or a little bit of honey if you prefer it sweet. After this, mix in some fresh garden herbs! Dill, thyme, chives, and rosemary are all great options. Form your butter into a log, wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate it to hold its shape.
Garden Vegetable Cheese Spreads
Soft cheese with a mild flavor, like chevre, whipped feta, or boursin, can become much fancier and tastier with roasted garden vegetables and herbs! You can get creative with garden vegetable cheeses by using roasted red peppers, caramelized onions, garlic dill pickles, and jalapenos.
For more garden-inspired charcuterie board ideas in Iowa, visit Wallace’s Garden Center to see all the delicious edibles available now—or start planning your garden for 2023! Bon appétit!