If you find any of these ingredients hard to track down, you can still create something wonderful: just make sure you’ve got some nice cheese, good quality meat, a bit of veg and some olives. Chopped fresh chilli, fresh herbs and some decent extra virgin olive oil help pull the whole dish together nicely.
TO DRINK (F&HE): The Italian Frescabaldi Chianti or SA’s Leopard’s Leap Lookout Red are both perfect with this large variety of flavours.
Italian-style antipasti plate
- 2 x 150g mozzarella balls, torn in half
- 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
- 20 slices prosciutto, bresaola or salami
- 1 x 280g jar artichokes in olive oil, drained, oil reserved
- 1 x 290g jar sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil, drained, oil reserved
- 1 x 290g jar chargrilled or deli peppers in olive oil, drained, oil reserved
- 45ml (3 tbsp) mixed olives
- a handful of cherry tomatoes, halved
- Parmesan, for shaving
- a small bunch of fresh basil, leaves picked
- a pinch of salt
- olive oil, to drizzle
- a loaf of ciabatta bread, sliced
- 1 garlic clove, halved
Place the mozzarella at the edges of a large plate and scatter with chilli. Arrange the cured meat and all the vegetables in small piles over the rest of the plate. Top the meat with some Parmesan.
Put most of the basil leaves in a pestle and mortar or Flavour Shaker™ with a pinch of salt and crush to a paste. Add a few tablespoons of the reserved olive oil from the jars and stir to make a basil-flavoured oil. Spoon it over the mozzarella and the vegetables, then drizzle with a little olive oil.
Toast the ciabatta, then rub lightly with the garlic, drizzle with a bit more of the reserved oil and serve everything together with the remaining basil leaves scattered over.