Charcuterie is an easy party-pleaser, but how do you keep your board light and fresh enough to serve in summer? We got tips from the expert of all experts. Originally from Paris, Tristan Crépin is the resident Chef Charcutier at Boston’s Bar Boulud, following stints at Daniel Boulud’s locations in New York and London.
A proper board
According to Tristan, the wooden board is the way to go. It’s traditional, classic and doesn’t affect the texture of the meat.
Trade up for terrine
Swap out your salami and confit for terrine, a layered loaf of meat or vegetables that’s sliced when served. Tristan’s own poulet aux agrumes -- a chicken and citrus terrine – is made with chicken legs and summer citruses (blood oranges, lime and oranges), and cooked in chicken stock, vegetables and gelatin before its chilled and formed into a mold. He tops his dish with fresh mint and cilantro for a savory spreadable that’s refreshing, rather than heavy.
Micro-manage your meats
Alongside your terrine, Tristan recommends a dried ham like, “Jambon de Bayonne or Ibérico” (go with thicker slices so you don’t end up with a “gummy texture”) and and some saucisson sec, smoked, dry sausages.
For placement, he says, “I keep the terrine on the right side [of a board], the pâté on the left, and the ham in the middle.” Keeping the cheeses and meats separate is important, he adds, “so the flavors don’t blend unless the guest wants them to.” Tristan also advises separating the two when you store leftovers in the fridge to preserve their integrity.
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