Charcuterie boards are in vogue. I get it. I love them too. And I don’t blame any host who has decided that this is their go-to appetizer.
That said, some variation in appetizers isn’t such a bad thing. This is where heavenly burrata comes in. Especially if you have a smaller crowd (4 to 6 people) joining you for a seated dinner then this burrata is an excellent option.
It looks and tastes restaurant quality but it’s so so easy. It probably takes you longer to cut up little meats and cheeses for the charcuterie board than it does to pull this off.
Here’s how you do it:
- Make the carrots: This is really easy. I like to use multi-colored carrots because I think they look nicer but you can really use any fresh carrots. All you do is wash the carrots and then using a peeler, peel long thin strips of the carrot. Place the strips in a large bowl, and cover with water and ice cubes. Put them in the fridge, and wait about 20-30mins until the carrots are curled. You can help them along by rolling them first, and then use a paperclip or toothpick to hold them in their curls while they soak in the water but it’s really not necessary. They’ll curl on their own in the ice water after a while .
- Make fresh croutons: Once the carrots are in the fridge, now it’s time to make the croutons. This is as simple as slicing a good loaf of bread into a few cubes (no crust). Then use the skills you honed as a drunk college kid to fry the cubes in melted butter like you would with a grilled cheese. The only difference here is that you want to make sure you do all 6 sides (4 sides and the ends).
- Make fresh pesto: You can honestly use any pesto, but lately we’ve been eating a lot of ramp pesto (recipe here) so that’s what I used for this.
Once you’ve done these three things you’re pretty much done. Put the components together on a plate, and drizzle a little olive oil on the burrata. Then sprinkle with kosher salt, and fresh cracked black pepper.