Beautiful, Fresh & Uncomplicated Food & Entertaining

Fall Cherry, Fennel & Fig Butter Board

This Fall Cherry, Fennel & Fig Butter Board is what you should serve at your next gathering or get-together this fall. Rich creamy butter topped with fresh figs, walnuts, toasted fennel seeds, flakey salt, and dollops of Cherry Fennel Sherry jam all melt dreamily onto warm crusty bread. Easy to prepare and ready in an instant, it would be a great addition to the Thanksgiving spread.

What is a Butter Board?

A butter board is an ingenious and easy idea to serve guests. An alternative to a cheese board or charcuterie board, it is at it’s simplest, a board artfully smeared with softened butter and topped with an assortment of ingredients. This beautiful display is then dipped into with chunks of warm crusty bread or crackers.

The concept for the butter board recently became a TikTok and Instagram trend with a video shared by Justine Doiron of @justine_snacks. However, she credits the idea to Joshua McFadden—coauthor of the 2017 cookbook Six Seasons: A New Way with Vegetables for first coming up with the idea.

The butter board concept has taken off, and understandably s0. It is easy to make, very versatile, feeds a crowd, and is relatively inexpensive to put together as compared to its cheese and charcuterie counterparts. And there are so many ways to run with it – seasonally, savory, sweet, by region…

A slate cheese board - artfully smeared with fresh butter.

What are the main ingredients?

It is the namesake for this dish that is the star of the show. Butter takes the lead in this “recipe.” I put recipe in quotes because it is more of a loose guide than an iron-clad formula. The beauty of the butter board is that it is open to invention and whims… add some of this, more of that, sprinkle, dollop, repeat. I took this as an opportunity to play with a new jam in my store and hands down one of my favorite flavors – the Cherry Fennel Sherry Jam.

But the most important thing is the butter. As with all simple recipes with few ingredients, you want to source the best ingredients that you can find. So you want to find a great quality butter to make this shine.

The recipe ingredients displayed on a slate board: cultured butter, slices of fresh fig, toasted walnuts, toasted fennel seeds, fresh herbs, flakey salt, and jar of cherry jam.

Cherry Fennel Sherry Honey Jam

What is the best type of butter to use in a Butter Board?

For this recipe, I used a cultured butter from Vermont Creamery – a favorite for its flavor and style.

This summer I had the pleasure of attending the Vermont Cheese Summit – a cheese industry event which brought Vermont cheesemakers, the Vermont cheese council, and industry members together for discussions, presentations, and tastings. The event focused on the beauty, breadth, and strength of Vermont’s artisanal cheesemakers and on their future. I could not help but be profoundly impressed by the vision of Adeline Druart, the president of Vermont Creamery and a leader in this space. Their cheese and dairy products are some of my favorites, and I am lucky to call them local.

Cultured butter is made from fresh, pasteurized cream but differs from regular sweet cream butter by the addition of a fermentation process. After the cream is pasteurized, live cultures are added to it – similar to in yogurt-making. The cream then rests and thickens while developing rich and tangy flavor notes, like buttermilk and hazelnuts. Cultured butter has a higher fat content of 82%, similar to the standards for European butter.

For a butter board I would suggest using a high quality cultured butter, a European butter, or any local artisanal butter you can find.

If you make this Fall Cherry, Fennel & Fig Butter Board be sure to leave a comment below. I’d love to hear from you. And if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram, I’d love to see!

How To Make: Fall Cherry, Fennel & Fig Butter Board


Reviews

Ingredients:

Adjust Servings
2 Sticks Good Quality, Cultured Butter Quality butter is key here.
2-4 Fresh Figs, Sliced
4-5Tbsp. Cherry Fennel Sherry Honey Jam - Or substitute another cherry jam or fig spread.
1/2 Cup Toasted Walnuts
1/2 -1Tbsp. Toasted Fennel Seeds
Flake Sea Salt To Taste
Fresh Herbs To Scatter: Fresh Basil, Fresh Thyme
Pair with warm baguette or crusty bread, crackers, and fresh fruit to garnish.
For The Board
The New Slate Cheese Board From The Shop Why? It does not stain!

Directions

1.
Soften the butter.
Remove the butter from the fridge and bring to room temperature. The butter should still be somewhat firm. It should be spreadable, but not mushy. Depending on your climate this could take 30 minutes to an hour.
Mark as complete
2.
Prepare the board.
First, choose an appropriate surface on which to prepare your butter board. I used the new Slate Cheese Board from my shop. I love it for this application because it is dark and rustic, offsetting the light colored butter - but it also does not stain like wood can from absorbing the fat of the butter. Other great options would be a ceramic serving dish or plate, or marble or wood board. Once you have selected your dish - wash and dry it.
Mark as complete
3.
Spread on the butter.
Open the sticks of butter and place on the butter board. With a knife, carefully but artfully smear the butter across the board. Swirl and smooth to your heart's delight. This is your moment of zen before your guests arrive.
Mark as complete
4.
Sprinkle on the remaining ingredients.
One by one, add the topping ingredients. Sprinkle on the toasted fennel seeds and toasted walnuts. Place the sliced figs around the board. Add dollops of jam in open spaces. Finally scatter flake sea salt and fresh herbs over the top.
Mark as complete
5.
Garnish & add accompaniments.
Pair the butter board with warm baguette or crusty breads, crackers, and fresh fruits.
Mark as complete
Notes
These are notes about the recipe.
Joanna Revers

I'm a designer, creator, cook, and gardener living in Vermont. A Cultivated Living is where my life in design meets my love of cooking. Here I share inspiration and recipes for a healthy home, garden, and life... focusing on beautiful, fresh, and uncomplicated food and entertaining.

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