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Need appetizer ideas for wedding party!

t
tear it up Oct 14, 2009 05:46 PM

I'm hosting a wedding party for my sister at my house for 100-150 people and need some ideas for appetizers. The groom's Italian mother and grandmother and making all the main courses and I'm already planning on doing a bruschetta appetizer, but I need to come up with a couple of other appetizers--preferably nothing too complicated or expensive and keeping with the Italian theme. We're going to be setting up buffet style, so finger foods are preferable, and for some reason the mother of the groom is anti-dips so that eliminated most of my ideas. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

  1. Richelle Oct 15, 2009 09:13 PM

    I think Meatballs are great before they can be made ahead of time. You can easily make three types, starting with the same base, one with onions and parma, the other with chives and muschrroms, and a last one can be hot, with chilies and romano.

    There are Italians marinages in which dofferent veggoes are marinated, one consists of carrots, celery and such.
    The other is marinated mushrooms and just before serving you add cherry tomatoes and olives. Delicious..

    Anything with Prosciutto is awesome, even the over done melon, with a touch of freshly cracked pepper...mmmmmm.

    The last one is artichoke hearts, I also add heart of palms and bocconcini to the mix.
    It is a sure bet, I can assure you, they all disapear quickly and are relatively cheap to make.

    A soup can also be served with tiny bowls, a strachiella(SP) . with the option of adding fresh parma and such.

    Good luck!

    1 Reply
    1. re: Richelle
      hotoynoodle Oct 16, 2009 01:23 PM

      there will meatballs with the mains. i'd also skip the tortellini, and with so much tomato sauce, i'd skip anything tomato-y too.

      with all that starchy heavy food for entrees, i'd go lighter with the first courses:

      fresh crisp green salad, full of cress, romaine, radicchio and spiced almonds with a sharp citrus vinaigrette. maybe a caesar salad.

      sliced orange and black olive salad.

      endive leaves filled with italian tuna salad

      marinated olives and artichoke hearts

      giardenera, which is marinated cauliflower and pepper salad

      chicken tenderloins on skewers marinated in lemon and olive oil, then breaded with parm cheese, or coated with pesto

      mushroom caps stuffed with herbs, a tiny bit of goat cheese and toasted nuts

      smoked salmon with cantaloupe

      layered vegetable terrines are very pretty and inexpensive. i've also done terrines with white beans and then layers of carrot puree and asparagus

      zucchini or cuke rounds with smoked salmon pate piped on, or olive tapenade

      stuffed baby zucchini filled with herb/nut salads and finished with lemon confit

      some families like chicken livers, some do not. you could do pate on cuke rounds or livers sauteed with golden raisins and pine nuts

      you could do a light chicken or veggie soup

      oldies but goodies like deviled eggs, water chestnuts or figs wrapped in bacon

    2. c
      cheesecake17 Oct 15, 2009 05:24 PM

      Lots of dip type items can work on a piece of endive.

      You could do olive tapenade on endive leaves. It looks so pretty fanned out on a platter. Yes, good olives are pricey, but you only need a dab or two on each leaf.

      1. Phurstluv Oct 15, 2009 03:29 PM

        Nice list, GHG. In Spain, those little "tapas" are called Banderillas or Pinchos. Which reminds me, I need to get more toothpicks.

        I am making proscuitto wrapped mozzarella for a party tomorrow evening. The ywould def. go with your theme, don't know if you're up for making 100+, tho! Take a bocconcini (mini mozz. ball) cut in half, and a grape tomato, cut in half. Put halves together, then wrap in a slice of proscuitto that's been halved lengthwise, with a small leaf of basil. Secure with toothpick & drizzle w/ good olive oil.

        Second on the antipasto platters & tortellini on a pick ideas. And unless you want to have a pasta making party, storebought would work fine!! ;)

        3 Replies
        1. re: Phurstluv
          Phurstluv Oct 15, 2009 05:11 PM

          I also just finished making 4 dozen mushroom & sun dried tomato pockets and thought they may go with your spread as well. They are little puff pastry squares filled with sauteed chopped mushrooms, sun dried tomatoes, parm,, s&p. They come together rather quickly, and I've even frozen them. So you can match a couple batches ahead of time, then just pull them out of the freezer and bake from frozen, like 16 mins. Let me know, and I will type out the recipe.

          1. re: Phurstluv
            t
            tear it up Oct 16, 2009 11:51 AM

            Yes please, would love the recipe! If I can do these in advance and freeze it might be the best option. Thanks!

            1. re: tear it up
              Phurstluv Oct 16, 2009 02:54 PM

              Sure. Here it is. It looks long, but they go together pretty fast.

              MUSHROOM & SUN-DRIED TOMATO POCKETS
              Yields 24 pockets
              From Fine Cooking, Dec. ‘03

              1 small shallot or ¼ medium onion
              10 oz. cremini or white mushrooms, rinsed & dried, stems trimmed off
              1 Tbsp vegetable oil
              1 tsp kosher salt
              Few dashes of hot sauce (like Tabasco)
              1 Tbsp finely chopped oil-packed sun dried tomatoes, drained
              ¼ cup finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano
              1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
              1 egg, beaten

              Heat oven to 425*. Put the shallot in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add half of the mushrooms and pulse until very finely chopped (don’t overprocess or the mushrooms will become a puree). Empty the workbowl, pulse the remaining mushrooms, and combine with the first batch.

              Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium high, add the mushroom mixture and salt, and sauté until all of the liquid has been released and evaporated completely, 8-10 minutes; the mixture should start to brown and stick around the edges. Season with the hot sauce. Remove from the heat, stir in the sun-dried tomatoes and Parmiggiano; taste and adjust the seasonings.

              Spread the filling on a plate and chill in the freezer while you prepare the pastry. Lightly flour work surface and roll the pastry sheet to a 10x15-inch rectangle. Prick the dough all over with a fork, and then cut it into four long strips, each 2 ½ inches wide. Cut each of these strips into six equal pieces, to yield a total of 24 2-½ inch squares.

              Put a heaping teaspoon of the filling in the center of each square. Dab each corner with a little of the beaten egg, and then bring all four corners up to the center and pinch well to fuse them together. You should have little square pouches, with some of the filling showing. If you have any egg left, you can brush it on the exteriors of the pockets.

              Arrange the pockets on a parchment-lined or non stick baking sheet and bake until they’re puffed & deep golden on the sides & bottom and pastry is no longer doughy, 15 – 16 minutes. Let them cool on a rack for a few minutes and serve warm.

              As I stated above, I made four dozen, and they are in my freezer for tonight. I will add a couple of minutes to the baking time.

        2. s
          Stuffed Monkey Oct 15, 2009 07:55 AM

          Stuffed Mushrooms
          Antipasto on a skewer (pieces of salami, cheese (provolone), peppers, cherry tomatoes, artichoke hearts, olives, etc)
          Shrimp scampi
          Stuffed Tortellini (toss in salad dressing) on long skewers and then stuck into something like a half a melon. Then put more dressing into the other half of the melon if you can get away with it as a "dip"
          Seconding the proscitto-wrapped grissini...they're great.
          If you can get very large artichokes, do stuffed artichokes, put them on a platter and let people pull the leaves. Don't forget a garbage bowl. Make a pasta with the hearts the next day.
          Roasted olives

          2 Replies
          1. re: Stuffed Monkey
            t
            tear it up Oct 15, 2009 02:23 PM

            Thanks for the ideas! The mains are going to be a baked ziti, spaghetti & meatballs, a chicken dish (not sure exactly what kind), stromboli, roasted vegetables and I think an eggplant parm, but not sure about that one. The antipasto on a stick and the stuffed tomatoes or mushrooms sound like they would be easy enough to do for a lot of people and won't cost too much. I'm a huge fan of anything wrapped in proscuitto, but not sure if that will fit in the budget since we'll need such a large quantity. Stuffed Monkey...for the stuffed tortellini, would you use a store bought tortellini? That might work also.

            1. re: tear it up
              Cherylptw Oct 15, 2009 06:12 PM

              I wouldn't do both artichoke (with antipasti) on a stick & stuffed artichoke; ingredients too repetitive...Personally, not a great idea to have un-portioned artichokes on a table for that many guests to stand around trying to take a turn at pulling the leaves. Since you're on a budget, a soup served in small cups (you can buy disposable cups at Sam's or Costco. A roasted butternut or acorn bisque garnished with toasted pumpkin seeds & croutons is nice, even a artichoke or carrot soup would be good and soup goes a long way. Eggs also go far, so why not consider a large fritatta maybe baked in a long sheet pan then cut into squares (can be served at room temperature)

              You can do endive or radicchio leaves with the antipasti in each to make it easier to serve. Some crispy polenta rounds topped with a small dab of ricotta & sauteed leeks. Pickle some baby carrots with a ton of fresh dill & garlic to add to a vegetable or antipasti tray.

          2. Cherylptw Oct 14, 2009 06:06 PM

            Ditto Nemo...it would help to know the theme; will it be all italian, a combination of different cuisines, etc?

            2 Replies
            1. re: Cherylptw
              cookieluvntasha Oct 15, 2009 07:00 AM

              the OP said it would be italian theme.

              "need to come up with a couple of other appetizers--preferably nothing too complicated or expensive and keeping with the Italian theme"

              1. re: cookieluvntasha
                Cherylptw Oct 15, 2009 06:16 PM

                Appreciate you're looking out.

            2. goodhealthgourmet Oct 14, 2009 06:05 PM

              - prosciutto-wrapped grissini
              - arancini
              - broiled cherry tomatoes stuffed with a mixture of ricotta, bread crumbs, Italian herbs & garlic (or pesto)
              - meatballs on toothpicks
              - stuffed Italian olives

              you can also pair various Italian meats & cheeses, roll together & secure with a toothpick.

              1. n
                nemo Oct 14, 2009 05:53 PM

                What are the main courses going to be? It helps to know to avoid repetition of ingredients.

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