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By: Loretta Sebastiani

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Authentic Italian Cooking

Italian antipasto ideas

italian salami, the photo shows how Italian arrange salami in the serving dish, a typical example of antipasto platter
Assorted salami platter

Italian appetizers.

Italian appetizers are famous all over the world.
In the next pages you'll be able to find a great variety of recipe ideas for a classic Italian antipasto platter: assorted salami combined with pickles, bruschetta, crostini, panzerotti, marinated anchovies, clams, olives, artichokes in oil, Russian salad, seafood salad, carpaccio or other tasteful recipe ideas.
Recipes can be traditional appetizers or my original home cooking.
You'll know how to begin a lunch or a dinner party, Italy-style consulting the next pages.
If you have any problem, !

Traditional Italian appetizers


Traditional Italian antipasto (starters, appetizers)

Marinated raw anchovies

marinated raw anchovies

Fish antipasto typical of traditional Italian cuisine, particularly Sicilian cuisine. Marinated raw anchovies are very tasty but you have to use very fresh, fleshy and good-quality blue fish.

Anchovies in green sauce

anchovies in green sauce

Cold fish antipasto. You have to serve them with other fish tidbits full of taste.
It's a very simple recipe to do at home as long as you have fresh ingredients, especially anchovies.

Vegetable-and-meat assorted antipasto platter (fall recipe)

Italian antipasto dish for fall menus

This plate of assorted appetizers is a great idea for your cold starters in autumn. Its ingredients are: radicchio, grapes, the last flowers of pumpkin and beans. An idea different from the usual, but everyone who tasted it was enthusiastic.

Antipasto platter, Umbria-style

assorted Italian antipasto platter, Umbria-style

Assorted appetizer platter. From well matched and typical cold cuts of central Italy to classic crostini and omelette with black truffles, inevitable in an Umbrian menu.

Rice balls or rice croquettes

rice arancini, Sicily style

Rice balls (arancini) are a real glutton bite you can not miss if you want to prepare a typical Sicilian menu. But be careful. If they are served along with many other courses you have to lighten their recipe.

Turkey Aspic

summer aspic with meat

A delicious dish to prepare in advance and serve as single-course meal in summer or main dish in your summer get-togethers or starter in your winter or Christmas menu. You can read its recipe in our members-only area.

Boiled stockfish, Venetian-style

stockfish dish as starter, cold

This stockfish dish is very simple to do but tasty. It's ideal to start every fish menu all year round. You can combine it to many other dishes based on fish. I often prepare it for my Christmas Eve dinner menu

Bruschetta with garlic and oil

oil and garlic bruschetta

Who doesn't know garlic-and-oil bruschetta? In central Italy you can't miss it ;) It may happens waiter serves it to you while consulting menu card.

Italian bruschetta with olive oil, garlic and tomatoes

classic bruschetta with tomatoes

There are a lot of bruschetta recipes. Another idea is adding tomato to olive oil and garlic. A perfect appetizer for your summer menu!

Smoked salmon bruschetta alias garlic-and-smoked-salmon on toast

salmon bruschetta

What about bruschettas with fish? My husband and I like them very much. Our favorite recipe is this with smoked salmon. Suitable for many different occasions

Pecorino cheese puffs or salty puffs or bigné

Excellent to accompany cured meats or fish dishes. Typical recipe from Lazio. Unusual recipe as appetizer. Puffs are more popular as desserts,aren't they? so when I present them I'm always successful.

Grilled scallops

grilled scallops ready to be served

Grilled scallops is a classical antipasto idea based on seafood. Here you can read my version.
If you are preparing a seafood menu this could be a winning choice. Besides, it does not create too many problems to your guests at the table.

Grilled scallops with dried fruit

grilled scallops How-To

This is one of the best recipes of mine. If you are a member of our community of foodlovers you can find what kind of dried fruit I use ...

Salmon Carpaccio

carpaccio of fresh salmon

This is a perfect solution for a seafood antipasto (Italian starter) all year round. The only problem is to find very fresh salmon.

Sicilian caponata or eggplant relish

Sicilian caponata is a typical Italian starter made only with vegetables that a lot of people like. This dish is to be taken into consideration when you have to plan a dinner with vegetarian or vegan guests too. I always include vegetarian dishes in my menus in order to avoid unpleasant surprises. Nowadays vegetarians are more and more.

Baked omelette with aromatic herbs

Omelette in small portions appears in many traditional Italian antipasto platter. Here I show you a recipe for a lighter omelette flavored with herbs. It is baked not fried and matches to low-fat starters according to healthy eating.

Parmesan ice-cream

Parmesan ice cream is a real treat. It goes well with many cold meats and can be served in all seasons. It is a typical cold appetizer, Italian style.

Orange salad

orange salad with two different dressings

Orange salad is the best choice to accompany an assorted fatty cold cuts platter or an assortment of smoked fish finely sliced. You can serve it with veal patè too as a refined starter.

Ham rolls with Russian salad and hard-boiled eggs

Cold ham rolls, summer dish

Ham rolls with Russian salad in aspic are a great example of the versatility of Italian cuisine. They are in fact a great cold appetizer but an excellent main dish in summer too. The choice is yours :))

King prawns salad with black truffle

king prawns in cold salad

It's extraordinary the combination between black truffle and prawns. My recipe is simple but delicious. This salad can be served with grilled scallops, even those with dried fruit and sliced fish in brine or smoked. However it's great in many other combinations.

Insalata di mare solo italiano!

alici in salsa verde

È una nostra versione realizzata apposta per Natale ma che in realtà riproponiamo spesso a grande richiesta

Mortadella mousse

Seppioline alla griglia

La spuma di mortadella è una crema squisita che si prepara mescolando la mortadella con ricotta, parmigiano e panna. È ideale come antipasto se accompagnata da crostini caldi. Ma anche le tigelle sono speciali.

Italian “nervetti” salad or veal shank salad

veal shank salad

We Italians can buy veal shank salad in supermarket where we can find a good-quality product but making it at home gives us more taste, really!

Delicate Russian salad

Russian salad, Italy-style

This is the version of Russian salad I learnt from my mother and I have been making for years. It's easy to do and quick to do. I share with you a secret: it is not only a starter but a perfect side dish for your roast meet.

Marinated boiled beef (carpione beef)

carpione beef

Have you any boiled beef or veal left? You can marinate and serve it as main dish in your family menu or as a new starter in your get-togethers. I recommend you only to be careful combining the other courses for the presence of vinegar!

Olives, Madrid-style

May olives be missing in a starter, Mediterranean style? Never :)) Seasoned with paprika, onions, garlic and oregano. Another idea in the next recipe.

How to dress black & green olives, Italy-style

green and black olives, seasoned

These olives are dressed with typical Mediterranean ingredients (onions, garlic, olive oil and oregano) but there is also red hot chilli pepper and some drops of vinegar if you want to compare this version with Spanish version.

Raw oysters

raw oysters, how to serve them

Serve oysters on a bed of ice accompanying them with lemon slices and freshly ground pepper. Everyone will be able to season them according to his own taste.

Fried oysters

alici in salsa verde

It is a tasty recipe typical of those regions facing Adriatic sea. But my tip is to prepare them when you have few guests and have help in kitchen. In fact you have to cook them at last minute.

Panettone gastronomico solo italiano

Non è facile preparare il panettone gastronomico. In genere è meglio acquistare la base pronta altrimenti diventa un piatto lunghissimo da fare. Noi condividiamo con voi i nostri trucchi per non far crollare tutte le fette e tutta una serie di creme per la farcitura.

Tuscan panzanella or marinated bread salad

Tuscan panzanella

Panzanella can be a great main dish or an inviting appetizer in summer. The difference is in its portion. Serve it in a bowl in small quantities to accompany cold cuts or fish carpaccio as a starter. A real pleasure ...

Veal paté

The recipe for veal pate is a bit long but definitely worth if you love this kind of dish that we Italians have the habit to make for Christmastime.

Savory cream puffs with mushrooms and prawns

Savory cream puffs with mushrooms and prawns

Surprised? I think most people are used to eating sweet cream puffs. Instead, we Italian prepare both sweet and savory cream puffs with the same dough. Savory cream puffs are very tasty once stuffed with ricotta and salmon or mushrooms and prawns as in this case. They accompany cold cuts, for example.

Soused fish or fried & marinated fish

alici in salsa verde

Il pesce in carpione è un altro classico antipasto italiano per Natale e tutto l'anno.
La ricetta non è difficile e si presta ad essere servita in una antipasto misto di pesce.

Tomatoes filled with pineapple & walnuts

Pomodori ripieni di frutta

Altro esempio di antipasto di verdure freddo. Periodo migliore per servirlo? l'estate quando i pomodori sono profumati e maturi. Il ripieno è formato da ananas e noci. Sono una vera e propria delizia per chi ama frutta e verdura. Ma accompagnano bene anche un piatto di salumi assortiti. Anzi servono ad attenuare il loro sapore intenso non costringendo a servire dopo un primo ancora più saporito.

Tomatoes filled with assorted vegetables

Tipico antipasto da servire in estate quando i pomodori sono nel pieno della loro stagione e sono profumati ed invitanti.
Da preparare in anticipo.

Prosciutto & melon

Prosciutto e melone

Il più classico degli antipasti freddi italiani è prosciutto e melone. Una delizia per il palato e per gli occhi. Talmente buono che in estate non si apre solo un pranzo o una cena con prosciutto e melone ma ci si mangia anche! La differenza sta nelle porzioni. Accontenta davvero tutti e poi è veloce da preparare. Cosa c'è di meglio?

Classic Italian antipasto

Antipasto all'italiana

Il più tradizionale degli antipasti di terra in Italia. Un bel piatto di salumi assortiti accompagnato magari da ovette di quaglia sode, qualche verdura sott'olio e del pane particolare. La sua bontà è nella scelta accurata degli affettati per origine e qualità.

Assorted salami to be served with fresh and dried fruits

alici in salsa verde

Qualche idea per offrire salumi e frutta fresca o disidratata insieme e variare così la classica presentazione degli affettati.

Stewed clams

Le vongole sono uno degli ingredienti più gettonati e richiesti per il cenone della Vigilia di Natale o di Capodanno. Questa è una ricetta facile, facile. La potete servire come antipasto caldo in ciotoline individuali

Grilled little cuttlefish

Seppioline alla griglia

Le seppioline alla griglia sono un antipasto di mare tradizionale.
È una ricetta che copre tutta l'Italia e quindi si trovano facilmente anche già pronte nel banco del fresco al supermercato.

“Tigelle” or crescentine and gnocco fritto recipe

Tigelle e gnocco fritto

Avete mai assaggiato lo gnocco fritto con il culatello? credo che sia uno degli antipasti più buoni che servano in Italia. Lo gnocco deve essere fatto con la friggitrice in olio abbondante. La ricetta insieme a quella delle tigelle ci è stata fornita da un nostro affezionato lettore ed è quella autentica.

“Bella Rosina” eggs

Uova alla bella Rosina

Le uova alla bella Rosina sono un tipico antipasto piemontese legato all'epoca risorgimentale.
Per prepararle avete bisogno di due ingredienti: uova e maionese. E solo un po' di pazienza per passare al passaverdure il rosso dell'uovo e distribuirlo sui bianchi come vedete nella foto.

Grilled clams

Le vongole cotte in tante maniere diverse sono un ottimo antipasto di pesce caldo. Questa che vi presentiamo è una ricetta marchigiana. Le vongole vengono grigliate con l'aggiunta di pochi ingredienti.

Inciocchite clams

Vongole e sale. Tutto qui. Non vi serve niente altro per questa ricetta povera di pesce ma molto gustosa. Ve ne bastano anche poche per mettere insieme un assortimento di molluschi e crostacei e preparare una serie di assaggini caldi.

Cold braised veal with tuna sauce, in Italian vitello tonnato

alici in salsa verde

Questo è l'antipasto degli antipasti. Non trovate? Ideale perchè buonissimo. E poi si può preparare in anticipo.
Il vitello tonnato si può servire in tutte le stagioni. In estate diventa però anche un invitante piatto freddo che fa da piatto unico. Tutt'al più si accompagna a un po' di insalata di stagione.

Clams chowder

alici in salsa verde

Le vongole vengono cotte con pomodoro e odori. In genere si serve come antipasto caldo accompagnato da crostini di pane. Ideale per un menu a base di pesce.


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