I love to feast. I love to snack and pic-nic. I love to eat off of wooden cutting boards. Therefore, I love antipasto. Antipasto is a vital tradition in Italian cuisine, just as mezze and tapas are integral in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cultures.
Antipasto (or “antipast” in my husband’s family) means “before the meal.” The key to great antipasto is variety… in taste, ingredients, and colors. It’s as simple as choosing a delicious selection of hard and soft cheeses, thin slices of cured meats, olives, roasted peppers, artichokes, fruit, bread and olive oil.
Serving food in this way inspires communal eating and just feels more festive. An outstanding antipasto spread can be a simple first course, or become a lavish meal in itself. Our most recent antipasto spread included some excellent Genoa Salami and prosciutto, sliced heirloom melon, figs drizzled with honey, Marcona almonds, cranberry toast with goat cheese, feta-stuffed Piquillo peppers, and the recipes below: