Imagine being at a bridal party pre-Covid and the doorbell rings. Opening it you are presented with a huge charcuterie board. What a fantastic, over the top, simplified, yet elegant way to entertain! That’s where the interest in charcuterie came from for Leanne Allen, owner of Always on Board!
Just what is Charcuterie?
Charcuterie boards are not a new idea. Having been around for 100’s of years; charcuterie comes from the French word for the person who prepared the cured eats used on the board – Charcutier or “pork butcher”, which comes from the French for cooked flesh.
However, we learn from Leanne that modern day Charcuterie has grown up very elegantly.
Leanne uses hand crafted boards designed by Erin Londen of Willow Tree Collectibles in Coldwater.
The Beauty of the Board!
The boards are then laid out with fabulous offerings of high quality charcuterie (or cured meats), artisanal cheeses and artisanal crackers, antipasto ingredients, nuts, olives, stuffed peppers, fresh fruit and sweets etc.
The charcuterie board is then set to serve as a central “grazing” area.
Usually a charcuterie board is served with alcohol – wine and/or beer, which can be tailored for unique pairings, making the board an even more special event.
With our current “stay at home” orders, Leanne provides a front porch delivery service to her clients with Barrie and Innisfil area being at no charge.
Build a Board!
Leanne tells of her most interesting order being for a surprise 50th Zoom birthday where the host ordered “build charcuterie by numbers” and had one shipped to each guest across the county. Part of the guests’ enjoyment was preparing the board with each other via Zoom. Now that’s an Instagram moment if there ever was one!
Being a “Foodie” at heart, Leanne graduated in hospitality with extended courses in wine. With her love of food and sense of adventure she is working on “Travel around the World” boards. Presently she’s hosting wine and virtual charcuterie tastings with guest sommelier!
Gifts for all Occasions!
There are beautiful boards for all occasions as well. Upcoming of course, is a Mother’s Day board geared to Mom’s taste – a very beautiful sweet and savory board combined with beautiful flowers and chocolate and cheese. Yum!
There is also a “Market Board” in the works with offerings from Barrie’s own Farmers Market. What a lovely way to sample all there is to offer from the Market!
These beautifully designed boards have just so many choices, many of them local food artisans. Some of the locals that Leanne often uses when she’s creating is honey comb from Dicky Bee Honey, cheeses from the Cheesy Corner in Stayner as well as local produce to name a few.
Even now, with not being able to entertain groups, charcuterie boards are still a wonderful addition to date nights, gifts or socially distanced gatherings with individual charcuterie.
Make sure to call Leanne at Always on Board to make your evening – ever so special!!
Written By: Jane Laker
Photo Credit: Stephen Elliott