Antipasto Platter Ideas Please!
I have been asked to bring a "Wonderful Antipasto (i?) Platter" for dinner. I will have to purchase everything at Whole Foods the day before....and yes....it has to be Whole Foods as there are no other options (cheese shops, delis, etc). I would prefer most to be just purchased but I can make some things if I know how! It is for 12 adults and the platter will be the only appetizer. What and how much do I purchase??? If I should make something, how??? Thank you so much for your help to this antipasto virgin......
Half a Fra'mani salame, at least half a dozen pears or persimmon, and, if you like, a cheese or nuts.
add olives and peppers from the olive bar. this time of year about the only tomatoes that might do are the cherry or grape smalls. wonder if everyone is a bit vitamin c deprived at this time of year...last 3 times i put them out they disappeared. blanched sugar snap peas. prosciutto and soprasatta.
i love the idea of pears, too. or if they're not ripe on wednesday you can go with grapes.
whole foods carries a nice goat milk gouda that pretty much goes with everything without taking over.
the trick is not to go overboard. just enough to pique everyone's appetite for the feast while cutting out stealth pantry raids.
Get a jar of italian cherry peppers (the round peppers size a little smaller than ping pong balls -- preserved in vinegar). Take the smaller red ones, hollow them out from the stem and stuff them with a good soft goat cheese. Save the green ones for something else or use them too if you like.
Antipasto is easy, It really can be just about anything. A great cheese, a few fresh veggies (tomatoes, blanched asparagus, mixed greens,) add some cured meats, a few selections from the olive bar and a loaf of decent bread. Jars of marinated olives, pickled eggplant, italian tuna packed in olive oil, marinated artichokes all can add flavor and texture. It can be as elaborate or as simple as you want.
Thinly sliced hard salami & provolone -- take one slice of each, roll, skewer with toothpicks, cut into bite sized chunks, repeat. If you're feeling more creative put strips of cucumber or red pepper in the center when rolling.
If I'm making antipasto, I get an assortment of cold cuts: genoa, prosciutto, gabbagool, etc- rolled and fanned on the tray by me- some very sharp cheeses-the kind that hurt the roof of your mouth- cut into chunks and sprinkle in between the meats- in the middle can go the marinated olives- be sure and get the fat, green ones with the crushed red pepper flakes and the pits still in 'em - and also we love cute little baby pickles. I also like marinated artichoke hearts, and those gorgeous stuffed italian cherry peppers swimming in olive oil- cut them in half because they are not dainty bites.
You can get grissini to go with, or not... I think it rounds it out.
sundried tomatoes, reconst. in red wine
roasted red peppers
roasted garlic cloves
roasted asparagus spears
artichokes in olive oil
sliced ciabatta bread
lots of cracked black pepper
and quality cheese (Italian)
all go on my platters.
Great suggestions above.
My in-laws have exact requirements for their antipasta, which are:
Roasted red peppers (ours must be homemade to spec which is easy, but easy to buy too)
marinaded artichoke hearts (out of jar because the juice in there is poured over the platter)
some type of jarred hot peppers/small pepperocini
(I ALWAYS think I forgot something, but pretty sure this is it)
All of this is arranged decoratively on a large platter, with Italian bread slices served for dipping in the juice.
On the side, they have to have thin sliced salami and imported provolone. No other meat or cheese will do for them.
Since I now am the head cook, I like to make a few side bowls of caponata or fig tapenade or something like that. It's becoming part of our tradition too.
I did this last night! We had:
mixed marinated olives
caponata (Italian brand purchased in a very cute retro tin)
chorizo (not Italian I know, but I had a very nice one in the fridge)
marinated sundried tomatoes
A nice addition would be mustard fruits on the side. I'm also a big fan of caperberries and/or cornichons.