How to prepare a charcuterie platter

The first thing to do in order to tempt your guests is making sure that your platter is appealing. Indeed, no matter if you display premium quality products, if you throw everything randomly on a white plate, nobody will touch it!

Here are a couple of tips that will help your platter look amazing.

Make sure there is enough variety!

Since your platter will be shared between many people, make sure there’s something for everyone! Vary the flavours by including cured meats hailing from different areas and make sure you include at least one spicy product. Go ahead and make your own pâtés, rillettes or cretons. Pickled vegetables are also a must to add a little touch of acidity – olives, pickled eggs and gherkins will highlight the taste of your platter while also adding more colour. If you choose to add pickled beets, make sure you separate them from the other foods, as they may stain them if not. Nuts, dried fruit and cheese are also a great addition. However, make sure you avoid very soft and runny cheeses like brie.

Do not forget the bread, which is a great and delicious addition to a cured meat platter. Baguette, naan, flatbread, seasoned or flavoured bread (fig, nuts, olives, dried tomato…) – the only limit is your imagination. Make sure you include fat substances such as olive oil with balsamic vinegar or butter.

Flawless cuts

The appearance of your platter is a key consideration, but once you’ve attracted the eye of your very hungry guests, you must make sure that everything is flawless when it’s time to eat. That’s why you must pay close attention to the cuts. For sausages, you must either cut thick slices that match the shape of the sausage or very thin slices at an angle so they look a little bit bigger. Do not cut pepperettes and nuggets. Give your cold cuts come volume by rolling them or crinkling them. They’ll look more appealing and they’ll be easier to grab.

Cut your pâtés, rillettes and terrines diagonally and place them on two different sides of the platter. Put everything creamy in separate ramequins.

A truly noticeable platter

What type of platter should you use? A wooden tray or a good-looking plate will do. If you feel like doing something special, let your imagination loose and use a marble slab or framed glass, in order to impress your guests!

The perfect pairing

Given the wide variety of flavours and textures on your platter, versatile drinks are in order to complement your cured meats and cold cuts. Choose microbrews like a light red beer or a lager, fruity white wine or a round and light, red wine.