"The people who give you their food give you their heart" - Cesar Chavez

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Antipasto Platter for the Masses

I made this for our holiday party as a salute to Italy. This dish is a sure crowd pleaser, very easy to make, and it tastes even better when prepared ahead of time. This dish was the first to be polished off and it probably took me the least amount of time to prepare. This recipe is adapted from this Mixed Antipasto recipe from epicurious.com.

Antipasto Platter for the Masses
(12-16 servings)

For the marinade:
3 large garlic cloves, minced
4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon crumbled dried rosemary
2 teaspoons crumbled dried basil
2 teaspoons crumbled dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes
1 cup olive oil

6 large carrots, cut into 1/4 inch thick slices
4 fennel bulbs, cut into 1/4 inch thick slices
6 bell peppers, assorted colors, roasted and cut into strips
1 1/2 lbs stuffed green brine-cured olives
1/2 lb sun-drain tomatoes packed in oil, drained cut into strips
1 1/2 lbs marinated bocconcini (small mozzarella balls)
1 lb soppressata (hard Italian sausage), cut into 1/4 inch thick slices and quartered
2 15 ounce jars marinated artichoke hearts, rinsed and drained well
2/3 cup fresh parsley, minced, plus more for garnish

1. To prepare the marinade, whisk together the garlic, balsamic vinegar, red wine vinegar, rosemary, basil, oregano, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper to taste. Have a friend pour the olive oil in a stream into the bowl as you whisk it until the marinade is emulsified.
2. In a large pot of boiling water black the carrots and fennel or 3 to 4 minutes, or until they are crisp tender, drain them and plunge them into a bowl of ice water. Let the vegetables cool and drain them well.
3. In a large bowl toss the carrots, fennel, roasted peppers, olives, sun-dried tomatoes, bocconcini, soppressata, artichoke hearts, marinade and the parsley until the antipasto is combined well. Cover and chill overnight.
4. Transfer the antipasto to a platter, garnish with parsley sprigs and serve at room temperature. Bon Appetito!

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