The Art of the Antipasto Platter

Antipasto-Platter

A fun way to spark your next gathering in savory Italian style!

Are you ready to do more socializing, but overwhelmed by the idea of hosting? Celebrate Italian style with a shared opportunity to try an array of new foods!

Antipasto refers to the initial course of an Italian meal, as in starter or appetizer. The singular form is “antipasto,” while “antipasti” is used for the variety of bite-sized finger foods, which when arranged on a platter or board, make an artful way to tickle your palate before the next course.

Similar in concept to a cheese and cracker plate, an antipasto platter is more about it’s more about combining savory snacks than additional cooking time, and perfect for your next gathering!

A traditional Italian antipasto is an array of savory delights, including sliced crostini, whole olives, cherry tomatoes, a favorite local cheese, savory jams, marinated peppers and spiced nuts.

It’s easy to gather a selection of items from your nearby deli counter or olive bar, with an eye on a variety of complementary colors, tastes, and textures. Better yet, invite your guests to bring their favorite nibble to add to the board.

Choosing your ingredients

Take this opportunity to get creative with combinations, depending on your preferences and what’s accessible to you. Explore the deli counter or olive bar and the Italian food aisle at your local grocery store for inspiration.

But don’t miss the chance to make your own marinated mushrooms or spiced nuts – both easy recipes to round out your platter!

More ideas for an amazing antipasto platter:

  • Marcona olives
  • Candied pecans
  • Marinated mushrooms
  • Olives
  • Jarred roasted peppers or pepperoncini
  • Marinated vegetables, jarred or from the deli or olive bar
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Fresh figs
  • Fresh berries
  • Crackers or crostini
  • Italian breadsticks
  • Savory onion jam
  • Pickled garlic
  • Condiments like

Tips for arranging the platter

Once you have your ingredients gathered, the fun part begins. Think of a blank canvas you get to make into a work of edible art.

1. Choose a Serving Platter or Board

  • When it doubt go larger. You’ll often need more space than you think!

2. Consider the Layout

  • Aim for a visually appealing arrangement. Group similar items together and create a flow that encourages exploration.

3. Set the Stage

  • Begin with any cheeses or foods needing slicing, and either cut a few slices or set 1 small knife per item nearby.

4. Arrange Your Vegetables:

  • Place small bowls or artistically arrange marinated vegetables such as artichoke hearts, roasted red peppers, olives, and pickles. Set a small fork or miniature serving spoon nearby.

5. Integrate Fresh Fruits:

  • Scatter fresh fruits like grapes, apple slices, or figs to provide sweetness and a refreshing contrast.

6. Add Crunch with Bread and Crackers:

  • Include an assortment of sliced baguette, breadsticks, and crackers. Arrange them in different sections for convenience.

7. Garnish with Nuts:

  • Sprinkle nuts, such as almonds or walnuts, around the platter for crunch.

Leave a stack of cocktail napkins nearby. Small plates are optional, while a fun shared experience is a given!

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