(BPT) - You’ve probably run across a butter board or two while scrolling through social media or watching your favorite morning show — they’re one of this year’s most-talked-about culinary trends! Whether sprinkled with Himalayan salt and herbs or topped with edible flowers or nuts, a butter board can make for a truly memorable and delicious addition to any brunch, dinner or happy hour.
With seasonal gatherings upon us, what better time to try out this fun and easy-to-make dish that is sure to be a crowd-pleaser. To help you celebrate the season with a show-stopping butter board, check out these butter board tips and recipe ideas from Organic Valley — the people who know butter, best!
1. Determine the Occasion
One of the best things about butter boards is how they can be customized to fit nearly any occasion. They can play a supporting role, such as an appetizer board for happy hour, or they can serve as the star of your holiday celebrations, like a cream cheese breakfast board for brunch.
Depending on the occasion and season, you will want to determine if your board will be savory or sweet. A sweet butter board may be more suitable for brunch or an appetizer, and a savory butter board would be perfect as a main attraction for a happy hour or an accompaniment to the main meal.
2. Choose the Board and Create an Experience
You’ll first need to choose a board. The standard cutting board size is 12 x 18, which can work for both intimate gatherings and larger celebrations. Better yet, you can use any cutting board that you might already have on-hand; it doesn’t need to be fancy because the board will be covered in butter and various ingredients.
Using a wooden or marble board can enhance the overall experience. Better yet, using butter on wooden cutting boards helps keep them conditioned, preventing warping and cracking. Want to get a little fancier? Opt for a marble board and put it in the freezer before you serve guests to help keep your creation chilled throughout the meal. Pro tip: Set out your butter to warm up to room temperature as you're planning out your board experience.
3. Ingredient Selection
Now let’s talk about one of the best parts of creating a butter board — the ingredient selection! If you’re serving a butter board alongside a main dish, consider how you can incorporate the board ingredients into the meal. And vice versa, think about how the main dish can complement the board. For example, if you’re serving rosemary chicken, use the fragrant herb to top your butter board. Or if you’re serving a hearty beef stew, load up your butter board with crunchy bread that can also be dipped.
And don’t forget to have a little fun with this part of the planning! From selecting a variety of breads and crackers, to an assortment of herbs and flavored salts, there’s really no wrong way to serve up your butter board — the more the merrier!
4. Serving Etiquette
The occasion and number of people you’re hosting will determine how to best present and serve a butter board. For a casual wine night with a few friends, everyone can cut their own bread or veggies from the larger board and take butter for their bites as they go. For larger groups, consider cutting bread, veggies and other ingredients into bite-size pieces or use small crackers (Pro tip: this helps avoid double-dipping mistakes).
5. Party Tips
And for our final butter board tip — no matter the size of the crowd, you can always create mini personalized boards with drink coasters! Marble coasters work best and can be covered in a spread — butter, cream cheese or hummus — and then let your guests have fun with a DIY station to top their mini board with cracked pepper, herbs, seeds and nuts; this allows guests to create a board to their personal tastes and enjoy a truly one-of-a-kind experience.
One final tip … pair the personalized mini (coaster) boards with individual spreaders and colorful wine charms to help minimize confusion amongst party guests.
Bonus Board Recipes:
Appetizer Butter Board
For a butter board that’s perfect for happy hour or entertaining during the holidays, try this recipe using Organic Valley butter. Zhuzh up the board with nuts, seeds, fresh or dried herb cracked black pepper and flavored salts. This pairs nicely with all types of bread, crackers and meats and veggies like radishes!
Brunch Cream Cheese Board
If you need a more substantial offering for brunch, for example, check out this cream cheese board. It features Organic Valley cream cheese along with smoked salmon, sliced cucumbers, capers and red onions. Top it off with fresh dill and parsley and cracked black pepper and sea salt for a delicious way to wow your guests.
Using these tips and tricks, you’ll become a pro at making butter boards in no time. The only thing you really need is a few ingredients and your imagination to make you the host with the most!
Video credit: Carly Knowles, carlyknowles.com