Looking to create your first, holiday charcuterie board and need a little help? No problem! Charcuterie is a French term for a branch of cooking,
“Devoted to prepared meat products, such as bacon, ham, sausage, terrines, galantines, ballotines, pâtés, and confit, primarily from pork.”
Sometimes referred to, albeit erroneously, as a cheese board, the charcuterie refers more specifically to the type of cooking involved to create the contents of a charcuterie board. Practiced from at least the first century in ancient Gaul, French charcutiers have, for centuries, produced a traditional range of cooked or salted and dried meats, which varied from region to region.
Today, charcuterie boards can include other tasty items such as olives, berries, and cheeses.
And the holidays lend themselves especially for bright, festive, and sumptuous holiday charcuterie boards and displays.
Creating a Distinctive Holiday Charcuterie Board
Regardless of the occasion, the foundation for any charcuterie board is the selection of cooked, dried, or salted meat products. And we can help with that part of your holiday creation with specialty meats from Cal Mart.
While traditional boards will primarily feature pork meat selections, mostly cured, including various sausages, you can be creative here, as well.
For example, goose breast pâté or sliced roast beef or prime rib can serve to change things up a bit while offering known crowd-pleasers for your guests. According to one culinary site, cured meats were born of a need to conserve meat for months after the slaughter of the animal.
Salting, smoking, and air-drying are the three processes that transform fresh meat into a long-keeping staple. Which also makes them perfect for a charcuterie board, even during the holidays.
For example, consider adding a selection of Calabrese Salami along with some Genoa Salami and Prosciutto, a traditional salt- and air-cured Italian-style ham.
Every Holiday Charcuterie Board is Better with Specialty Cheeses from Cal Mart
While few kinds of cheese could be considered truly “seasonal,” there is always room on a holiday charcuterie board for a Napa Valley cheddar, brie, and blue cheese.
Of course, there are dozens upon dozens of other fine cheeses that will serve nicely on a holiday-themed board. And the meats and cheeses need not sit alone as it is the holidays, after all.
As an article from Today.com notes,
“Jimmy Kennedy, the chef at Cabot, recommends filling out your board with different types of bread, fresh fruit and vegetables, crackers, pickled veggies, olives, charcuterie, and condiments like whole grain mustard, sweet jam, and honey. Kennedy emphasizes that the cheese should always take center stage, but tasty additions can ‘help enhance the flavor and appearance of a lesser quality cheese.'”
And, last, but obviously far from least, no holiday feast is complete without a choice holiday wine selection. And Cal Mart has you covered in this arena, as well.
Of course, with such a wide and inviting selection to choose from, picking out just the right wines to pair with your holiday charcuterie board can be somewhat intimidating for most.
Fortunately, there are plenty of wine experts – for both charcuterie and fromage – to look to for reliable advice, as evidenced by these suggestions from EatingWell.com:
“If you love charcuterie boards, your wine is chardonnay.” – David Choi (@winewithdavid on Tik Tok)
“Lambrusco, a fizzy Italian red that’s amazing with meats and just so happens to be one of the best wines for Thanksgiving, too.”
“Or try any white sparkling wine, such as cava, prosecco, or Champagne—the crisp acidity and bubbly nature of all of the above will be super refreshing and can help cut through the richness of your charcuterie board components.”
And, if you and your guest’s taste tends more towards brewed libations, check out our impressive choice of craft beers, ales, ciders, and more.
Shop Cal Mart to Create Your Perfect Holiday Charcuterie Board
You’ll find Cal Mart situated in the heart of downtown Calistoga, which is located between State Route 128 and the scenic Silverado Trail. Cal Mart has been a destination stop for visitors and residents for over five decades.
Cal Mart, a family-owned and independent grocery store, is also known as a great Napa Valley Specialty Food store. We have provided a unique and enjoyable shopping experience for customers for more than half a century now. And we are understandably proud of our community here and our own reputation. This is why we work hard to continue earning the title of “Napa Valley’s Finest Grocery.”
Our love for what we do and our commitment to service is evident in the quality of our specialty foods selection.
And, along with our great specialty grocery items that are unique and hard to find, Cal Mart boasts a superb delicatessen, our gourmet cheese department, a huge selection of quality wines, and a diverse and impressively wide variety of craft beers.
Looking for other gift items to complement your specialty food selections?
We have a fresh and colorful stock of flowers and plants perfect for any occasion, as well as beautiful gift baskets, and much more. We invite you to make it a point to stop by and take time to explore all that we have to offer.
While you’re here visiting our deli, please feel free to talk with our knowledgeable staff and even treat yourself to a cup of coffee or tea from our Coffee Bar.
Cal Mart – where you will always find something that is unexpected, unusual, and uncommon!