How to master your holiday charcuterie board

A popular appetizer for any holiday party is a good charcuterie board. Chef Emmele Herrold joined us on The Nine with some tips. He's from Hazel, Ravines and Downtown, a new restaurant in Birmingham. 

Your two key ingredients for your board will naturally be the cheese and the meat. Chef Emmelle suggests 2 oz. of at least three kinds of cheese, and 2 oz. of at least two varieties of aged, cured meats. 

For cheese, go with a cheddar, a blue cheese and a triple crème variety. For meat, she prefers to choose salami, soppressata and other meats by Cremenelli, based in Utah.

Then, this won't be the show stopper but crackers are still a must. Use two different kinds and add at least 6 of each. Have about 2 oz. of jam available on your board, too. If you want fresh fruit on your board, go with about a half a cup of grapes and a few berries. Avoid citrus fruits. 

Then, arrange the items on a wooden board or slate. This will make enough for about 4 people to share. 

If you need to serve more, double or triple the portion sizes. You could also add nuts like almonds or cashews to the platter, or even roasted garlic. You can also garnish with a half-pomegranate or a few fresh sage leaves or stems of thyme.

You can hear more from Chef Emmele about the perfect charcuterie board in the video player above, or print out her tips here