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The Modern Charcuterie Board Meets the World of Bespoke Bagels, Spreads and Garnishes

How to Elevate a People-Pleasing Idea for Your next Shindig That Just May Break the Internet

 
It’s no secret that partygoers eat with their eyes first, which is why the charcuterie board concept has been trending on social platforms like Instagram and Pinterest for years now. Spinning this concept is limitless and well, fun. From sumptuously sweet to satisfyingly savory, we’ve got you covered. Here’s a short, step-by-step cheat sheet of sorts —a how-to for when you’re ready to build your own unique, edible masterpiece featuring delicious bagels and all the yummy accouterments. And yes, make sure you’re in portrait mode when shooting those amazing pics for Instagram :smile: !

When it comes to next-level food presentations, charcuterie boards have set the culinary world on fire. These stunning artful arrangements (typically adorned with an array of fancy cured meats, cheeses, fruits, nuts and spreads) have become a staple at all sorts of parties and events. But why should charcuterie boards be limited to traditional genres? Say hello to the bagel charcuterie board, a refreshing and creative twist on the classic concept which brings a delightful array of bagels, spreads and more to your table. Below, we’ll take you through a step-by-step process to creating your very own eye-pleasing bagel charcuterie board that’s sure to impress your guests.


First, Gather Your Supplies

 
To begin, gather all the necessary supplies and ingredients for your bagel charcuterie board. Some people like to sketch out a vision on paper to ensure variety, balance and complementary color themes. To get started, here’s your five-star shopping list.

Bagel Assortment:

Select a variety of bagels in different flavors, such as salted egg, sesame, poppy, everything, cinnamon raisin, and whole wheat, to cater to different tastes. Impress your foodie friends with gourmet selections like Rosemary Olive Oil and Blueberry Lemon. Spread has quite a large variety at each location. Protip: Best to preorder (up to seven days in advance) to ensure you get the bagel flavors that you desire for your board. We tend to sell out early on some days!

Bagel Toppings/Spreads:

Cream Cheese: Opt for regular cream cheese (and maybe even plant-based cream cheese) and also other popular flavored options like veggie, strawberry basil, or nova salmon for added variety. It’s important to realize that part of the fun is having guests create their own combinations so be sure to allow for a multitude of flavor profiles.

Cured Fish:

Smoked salmon or lox are classic choices, but you can also include other cured fish like gravlax or smoked trout. Also popular among bagel builders is whitefish salad which Spread prepares in-house to rave reviews.

Fresh Veggies:

Choose an assortment of colorful fresh veggies like sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, red onions, tri-colored peppers, and avocado. Protips: be sure to brush your avocado slides in lemon juice to keep them from turning brown. Also, it’s time to break out your knife skills. Perhaps experiment with cutting veggies on the bias or cut veggies in an unexpected pattern for visual intrigue and dimension.

Sweet Spreads:

Include a selection of sweet spreads such as peanut butter, almond butter, Nutella, and fruit preserves. Also experiment with honey butter, apple butter and lemon curd.

Savory Spreads:

Crowd-pleasers include hummus, hot pepper jelly, Balsamic fig spread, Guacamole and hot honey.

Assorted Cheeses:

Add some slices of creamy brie, tangy goat cheese, imported Swiss or sharp cheddar to complement the bagels.

Garnishes:

Fresh herbs like dill, chives, and basil can be used as garnishes to add a pop of color and enhance the overall presentation. But other toppings can also wow guests such as chia seeds, hemp hearts, shredded coconut, homemade granola, and grated ginger. Pro-tip: Don’t go too crazy here. We recommend theming your boards, so combinations don’t get too weird. Think about presenting a “Salacious Sweet Nothings” board and also “Savory, Spicy and Simply Yummy” board for example. “Queen Neptune” is also a cute idea for a fish-centric board.

Serving Platter:

Grab a large wooden or marble platter that provides ample space for arranging the bagel toppings creatively or get creatively rustic. A cookie sheet with brown paper wrap will do as will a farm-house style picture frame. Don’t forget to pick up some mini bowls and ramekins. We like the variety of vessels available on Etsy. An aspect that is often overlooked is height. Varry the heights of your charcuterie components. Elevate a ramekin or create a “ramp” of crackers. The possibilities are endless.


Next, Prepare the Bagels and Toppings

 
Slice the bagels into bite-sized pieces to make them easy to pick up and enjoy. Lay them out in piles on the platter, arranging them in a visually appealing manner. Place small bowls or ramekins next to each pile to hold the spreads and toppings. Ensure you have enough space between the toppings to make the board look well-organized and aesthetically pleasing.  

Now Assemble Those Beautiful Bagel Toppings

 
Now comes the fun part - arranging the bagel toppings on the charcuterie board. Here are some creative ideas to inspire you:

The Classic Lox: Place the smoked salmon or lox slices near the cream cheese, along with some red onions, capers, and lemon wedges. This classic combination never disappoints.

Veggie Delight: Group the fresh vegetable slices together, creating a colorful medley of flavors and textures. Consider making a mini tower of avocado slices for an eye-catching display.

Sweet Tooth’s Paradise: Arrange the sweet spreads like peanut butter and Nutella with sliced bananas, strawberries, and honey. Add a sprinkle of chopped nuts (make sure your crowd is free of nut allegories beforehand) for an extra crunch.

Cheese Lover’s: Display the assorted cheeses in a separate section with some grapes or dried fruits to complement the flavors. Spanish Marcona Almonds, Turkish Apricots and Fig spreads always add a nice upscale touch. Try hot honey too – it’s a surprising flavor profile that adds an unexpected punch.


Don’t Forget to Add Your Own Visual Touch

Enhance the aesthetics of your bagel charcuterie board by adding a few decorative touches. Scatter fresh herbs such as dill and/or chives throughout the board for a burst of green. Edible flowers can also add a touch of elegance and sophistication. Be mindful of the color balance and ensure the presentation is visually captivating.

We absolutely love these mini, reusable chalkboard signs and chalk marker sets from Amazon.

They add form and function as well as a homespun farm-house aesthetic. We also love creative ways to use craft paper raffia ribbon and dried flowers.


Variety is Important

 
To cater to different tastes, it’s important to offer a wide range of bagel flavors and spreads. Include gluten-free or vegan options if needed. A modular approach is key to a successful bagel charcuterie board, so don’t be afraid to experiment and get creative with your food and decoration choices. We love parchment paper “leaves”, display boxes with dividers, pinecones, rosemary sprigs and maybe even unexpected, sweet treats like macarons and high-end caramels.

Now that your bagel charcuterie board is complete, invite your family and friends to indulge in this delightful breakfast-brunch treat. Encourage them to mix and match their bagel creations with the various toppings and spreads. This interactive experience is so fun.

The bagel charcuterie board offers a delightful twist on the classic concept and allows you to truly explore. Your own creativity By combining a variety of bagel flavors with an assortment of delectable toppings and spreads, you’ll design a visually stunning and utterly delicious spread that is perfect for any occasion. Let us know how it goes. Contact jls@spreadbagelry.com.