Word Of The Day: Charcuterie

One of the highest forms in food culture is aging stuff (think wine and cheese). Charcuterie is the art of seasoning, smoking or brining meat — most commonly pork. The French have specialized in charcuterie since the 15th century, but cured meats are popular in almost all cultures today. The challenge to charcuterie lies in preserving the meat in a flavorful way while avoiding pesky bacteria. Curing the meat may take months but its worth the wait, just ask chef Craig Deihl of Cypress in Charleston, South Carolina.

You can score major bragging points by curing your own meat to make charcuterie at home. Start the process by buying your meat from a butcher (an art form in itself), choose your aging method of choice, and let the curing begin.

Use today's Word of the Day: How to Cure Your Own Pastrami