Cashmere Apron

antipasto platter

Antipasto 2The Thanksgiving meal is pretty straightforward. Each family has their traditions and their favorite way of cooking the meal. But what about the rest of the holiday season? The number of potential events in the name of “The Holidays” are endless. What happens when you host? Are you a begrudging entertainer shamed into hosting an event? We’ve all held our breath during the pregnant pause or burned a hole in the ceiling with our eyes when the question is thrown out year after year, “What are we having for__________?” “Whose house will ______________ be at this year?” Maybe you are an enthusiastic volunteer and then you are left with another question, “WHAT AM I GOING TO MAKE?” My goal, which has yet to be achieved, is to be so prepared for an upcoming evening of entertaining in my home that I have an entire hour to get ready while casually sipping a glass of bubbly.

This Holiday Meal for 10 is designed with my procrastinating planning skills in mind. Almost everything can me made in advance with the final touches being added right before your guests arrive.

Yesterday’s post featured Holiday Brie with a Spicy Raspberry and Syrah Preserve for a starter. Today we present the dinner course which includes a colorful Antipasto platter, The Best Caesar Salad by Our Friend, Brenda and an Organic Heirloom Tomato Marinara Sauce served with pasta. Tomorrow, we feature the dessert course.

Antipasto Platter Ingredients
20 slices Capicola (this Italian meat has a bit of a kick but is a creative alternative to salami)
20 slices Provolone
small container of marinated artichoke hearts cut into quarters or halves
6 Dolmas cut in half with a serrated knife (grape leaves stuffed with rice, mint, pine nuts. Purchase in a high-end grocery or specialty store)
mixture of pitted Italian olives
small container of red hollow peppers
small container of large marinated Italian beans
one container of mushrooms, cleaned and cut in half and marinated in Italian dressing 1-2 hours before serving
Italian breadsticks
Butter lettuce and arugula for garnish
mini artichokes for display
large silver platter
assortment of small bowls

Antipasto Lead

Antipasto Platter Directions
Use individual small bowls for marinated artichoke hearts, Italian olives, red hollow peppers, Italian beans, and marinated mushrooms.

Separately roll up the Capicola and Provolone. Place the Butter lettuce in the middle of the platter and the mini artichokes on top to begin your display. The Butter lettuce adds a little height and dimension to the display. Arrange all the ingredients around the center of the artichoke display, making sure to add variety with the small bowls and the food not in bowls (Capicola, Provolone and Dolmas). Once your platter has been arranged to your liking, fill in empty spaces and the perimeter with Arugula and Butter lettuce. Place breadsticks in a brightly colored basket next to your platter.

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