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The quick guide to putting together an antipasto plate

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Hosting a multi-course dinner party can be a stressful event to prepare for, with the need to get everything assembled, cooked and served at the right times. 

If you’re looking to keep things simple, serving up a classic antipasto platter as an appetizer dish can be a tasty way to start the evening.

Antipasto literally means “before the meal”, and is the traditional first course of a formal Italian meal. Platters typically feature cold cuts like cured meats, artichoke hearts, cheeses, anchovies and mushrooms. They are usually accompanied by wine and eaten before the meal to stimulate the appetite.

Platter
By Richard Ricciardi
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Antipasto is traditionally served in individual portions, although big platters can also be shared at dinner parties.

 

While antipasto is traditionally served at the table rather than like hors d’oeuvres during a cocktail party, the bite-sized foods are usually suitable for either setting. Preparing a platter ahead of time and serving them when a big party starts is possible with refrigerators like the Electrolux EQE6307SA. The fridge comes with an extra-wide compartment for storing large party platters, keeping cold cuts fresh and chilled for easy retrieval and serving.

Assembling an attractive spread can be done easily. A typical antipasto plate usually features an array of cheeses, meats, breads, olives, and vegetables. If you’re serving antipasto individually to your guests, it may help to narrow your choices down to two or three items, then incorporate a few fresh, seasonal fruits and vegetables.

Antipasto
By mhaithaca
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Getting the ingredients together is just half the work in assembling an antipasto platter – good presentation also matters.

The rest is about plating and presentation. Keep in mind flavours, aromas and colours to keep your antipasto plate tasty, vibrant and attractive.

An antipasto platter can include these items:

Mozzarella, provolone, fontina, Parmesan, or goat cheese

Thinly sliced ham, prosciutto, and Genoa salami

Pepperoni or sopressata salami

Anchovies, sardines, or tuna

Sun-dried tomatoes in oil, grape tomatoes, cherry tomatoes

Marinated artichoke hearts, roasted red peppers, capers and roasted cipollini onions

Black and green olives

Assorted fresh vegetables

Sliced ripe pears, melon, figs, or small bunches of grapes

Flavoured breads, breadsticks, and flatbreads

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