Charcuterie (/ʃɑːrˌkuːtəˈriː/ or /ʃɑːrˈkuːtəri/; the french word that is for the branch of cooking devoted to prepared meat products, such as bacon, ham, sausage, terrines, galantines, ballotines, pâtés, and confit, primarily from pork.
Extremely popular in many of todays restaurants I decided we should sample our way through some of the ones that we have seen on menus and others that have been recommended to us. So over a couple of weekends we hit the town and here is what we discovered.
The Selkirk Grill located in the Gasoline Alley building at Heritage Park.
- For $19 you get a generous selection of house cured meats including thinly sliced dried beef, house made salami, smoked salmon, anise cured duck breast and head cheese. The Head Cheese is where my inner foodie really came out as it seems like a strange kind of item. It is a slow cooked meat that is set into a terrine mould and set with a broth that when chilled forms a type of jelly that supports everything. Along with the delicious selection of meats were two types of hard cows cheese and a great ash covered soft goat cheese. Other accompaniments included an onion jam, whole grain mustard, house made sweet pickles, house made pickled beets, crostini, cheese crackers and a few house made pork rind puffs. This Charcuterie board can easily feed two people as is however, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the fresh made Bannock with house made butter ($6). There really is not much that is better than this bannock dough fried until puffy and then lightly salted. Both items are fantastic and will have us returning for more!
Fergus and Bix Restaurant and Beer Market in Marda Loop
- Here they do the Charcuterie a little different. You have the choice of the Beer Board for $29 (or $20 during happy hour daily from 3-6pm) or the Wine Board for $25. We decided to try out the Beer Board for our hunt today. The board came with an assortment of cured italian meats including Calabrese and Cappicola. Two grilled locally made sausage one pork and leek and one chicken and apple. The board also included a fresh mini pretzel loaf, root chips, cheese, thinly sliced asian pear and pickled peppers. Our favourite part of this board were the accompaniments, the house made bacon jam is amazing! This board is a good size but would best serve as an appetizer rather than a meal for two.
Bow Valley Ranche in Fish Creek Park
- For $26 the Charcuterie board at the Bow Valley Ranche comes with an assortment of well seasoned house cured meats that included Cappicola, anise cured salami, a mild and spicy cured venison and cured duck breast. There were also house made olives and marinated vegetables, a soft brie and a harder cow cheese along with 3 fresh in house made condiments a ginger chutney, melon chutney and a cranberry grainy mustard. The board also comes with house made bread and a bread stick that was light and crispy. This is a board that is easily shared with two people and will leave you quite satisfied although once you have looked at the other menu items it will be hard to resist ordering a full meal.
There are so many more to explore but if I waited and tried all of them this blog would never get finished. With these boards popping up at many restaurants you can be sure we will keep indulging in them at every turn.
I do love different charcuterie boards. The opportunity to taste all of the various house cured meats and sauces. The best part of the board for me is trying all of the different accompaniments with each of the meats. This is the chance to let your imagination run wild, be adventurous and try all kinds of matches.
Discovering new boards everywhere, I am Your Everyday Foodie.