1 x loaf bread, unsliced (we used a standard white loaf, measuring 26cm x 11cm x 11cm), see tip
200g tub French onion dip
2 x 125g packets sea salt grissini (we used Always Fresh brand grissini)
100g packet sliced salami (look for salami packets with slightly smaller rounds as they fit better on the roof), halved
200g round brie
10 pretzel sticks
½ bunch fresh thyme
15cm length string
1 x toothpick
5 x 15cm sprigs rosemary
1 long twiggy stick, halved lengthways, plus extra to serve
200g block vintage cheddar
120g tub baby pepper bells filled with fetta
2 sprigs flat-leaf parsley
⅓ cup mixed nuts, plus extra to serve
Prosciutto, to serve
CREAM CHEESE CHRISTMAS TREE
200g spring onion and chive cream cheese round
2 Tbsp finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
¼ yellow capsicum
1 Tbsp finely chopped semi-dried tomatoes
- Use a serrated knife to trim the bread into an 18cm long loaf, discarding offcuts (or make into croutons, see tip). Make a small incision on both long sides of the loaf, 8.5cm from the base. Using these as your starting point, use a serrated knife to cut away the top corners to form the roof. Place onto a serving board (if the base of your bread loaf isn’t completely flat you may need to trim slightly to level and make more stable).
- Working with one side at a time, spread French onion dip on walls, then press on grissini to form timber panels (it’s ok if the grissini are broken as you can easily patch a few together to get the right length).
- Spread French onion dip on roof of house and press on salami halves, slightly overlapping, to form roof tiles.
- Slice 2 x 1cm lengths from the brie and place side-by-side on a board to form one wide piece. Press pretzel sticks onto the brie and gently trim tops of sticks to form an arch to create a door shape (you may need to hold this up to the house a few times to check the lengths of the sticks). Press brie and pretzel door onto the front of the house.
- Trim 2 x 1cm lengths from remaining brie and cut each in half to form 4 x small squares. Press squares onto outside walls of house to form windows.
- Holding the ends of the thyme together, gradually twist the thyme sprig lengths around themselves, and then form into a small wreath shape, approx. 4cm wide. Tie with a little string to secure. Tie the end of the string to a toothpick. Press the end of the toothpick into the top peak of the house (between the roof).
- Trim rosemary to fit under awnings and gently press rosemary underneath front of the salami (the salami will hold the rosemary in place).
- Place halved twiggy stick onto the roof seam between the salami tiles.
- Cut half the cheddar into rough pieces (they don’t need to be perfect shapes as they are forming pavers). Arrange pavers on board to form a slightly curved path to the house.
- For the Cream Cheese Christmas Tree, using a 4cm round cutter, cut a round from spring onion cream cheese. Trim a little of the cream cheese offcuts and place on top of the round, moulding to form a tree shape. Place parsley on a small plate. Roll cream cheese tree in parsley. Trim half the yellow capsicum into very thin strips, and trim remaining into a small star shape. Press capsicum strips into sides of tree to form tinsel, and press in semi dried tomatoes to form lights. Top with capsicum star and place next to the house.
- Press remaining rosemary sprigs into one baby bell pepper to form pot plant and arrange next to house. Scatter mixed nuts around base of bell pepper to form rocks. Press flat-leaf parsley sprigs into another bell pepper to form another pot plant and arrange next to house.
- Decorate the board with remaining cheese, meats and biscuits to serve.
- Day-old bread is the easiest to work with for this recipe.
- This is best made close to serving, ensure you remove the toothpick from the wreath before serving.
- You could turn the leftover bread into croutons for dipping. Simply tear into 4cm chunks, drizzle with a little olive oil and bake at 180C fan-forced/200C conventional for 8-10 minutes until golden.
Four charcuterie chalet ideas
Rather than making a standard cheese board this Christmas, give this clever hack a go! Need some more inspiration? Take a look at these charcuterie chalets to help you get started.
While everyone decorates in their own style, the common themes have been a twiggy chimney, trees made from rosemary and cottage cheese snow.
This creamery made a Charcuterie Chalet out of cheese, with a pepperoni roof and cabanossi fences. Good enough to live in we think.
When it comes to the finishing touches, the world is your oyster. This user, @thankyoucheese, garnished with pomegranates, broccoli for bushes, candied cranberries, rosemary and a little mozzarella ball snowman.
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