This year Valentine’s Day is on a Tuesday. Therefore, if you’re celebrating at home, I figured you need something quick and easy but a little bit special. This charcuterie board should be just the thing. It involves absolutely no cooking and takes only minutes to get onto the table. All the hard work can be done a few days before, and it isn’t really hard work. It’s just a quick pop to the shops to choose some delicious looking meats, cheeses, crackers, olives etc.
What you choose is completely up to you. Go for what you like, aiming to get a mix of meat, cheese, something spreadable, some bread or crackers and a few other bits and pieces to keep things interesting.
For the meats, I went for two different salamis, making sure that they both taste and look different to each other. A whole mini cured sausage would be nice. Just make sure you have a really sharp knife on hand so that you can slice it nice and thinly.
I decided to go for manchego cheese – a hard ewe’s milk cheese from Spain, as I know that both Dan and I like it.
My spreadable option was some black olive tapenade as I absolutely love it, although you could go for a pâté or even a soft crumbly goat’s cheese.
Something pickled is a good idea as it cuts across the richness of the meats and cheeses. I went for cornichon and caper berries, both of which will add a good tang to any mouthful.
As far as I’m concerned, no charcuterie board would be complete without olives, so included these within a selection of antipasti, and the sun blush tomatoes, big and bold, screamed to be bought, both for their bright colour on the board and their taste.
I went for a couple of different types of crackers. I’d had grand ideas about making my own crostini but, wanting to remain true to my idea of a quick and easy meal, I filed that idea for another day. I’m glad I did as the crackers I got were delicious.
A handful of almonds, a small bunch of grapes and some apple slices add texture and freshness, completing the picture.
As you can see, the final board looks a lot healthier than it could, the cured meats being kept to a minimum and lots of other different flavours and textures being introduced to make something as good to look at as it is to eat.
For me this is the ideal Valentine’s Day meal. It’s quick and easy to put together, different from anything you would normally serve, and I like a sharing board. It’s just a little bit more intimate than your own plate of food – perfect for the occasion.