In Italy, a true appetizer course would be the antipasto, a series of hot and cold appetizers shared at the table. Try an antipasto appetizer course at your next party, or sample one or two recipes as part of any Italian meal.See Popular Italian Appetizers Recipes
"It's a tradition for winemakers to bake bread with grapes to celebrate the harvest," says David Page. Each fall, he uses his wood-burning oven to make this crusty flatbread studded with creamy crumbled blue cheese and sweet table grapes.
Melissa Rubel rolls buttery puff pastry around salty prosciutto and melty Fontina to create deeply savory hors d'oeuvres.
Robust Prego® Italian Sauce, red wine and mozzarella cheese meld together for a delicious Italian-style fondue.
A variety of coatings makes these breadsticks an interesting side dish or appetizer bread. Coiled ends add flair.
In this clever recipe, Jason Stratton of Seattle's Spinasse makes a simple, creamy sauce by simmering toasted pine nuts with lemon zest and chicken stock, then pureeing them. His other smart trick: cooking shrimp on a superhot bed of coarse salt flavored with bay leaves and lemon zest.
Spiedini are pieces of meat and other foods grilled on skewers. "Sausages and chicken livers are staples of Tuscan cuisine," says Rolando Beramendi.
"I don't know if I invented this combo, but since I don't remember stealing it from anyone, I'll take the credit," says Michael Schwartz of his ingenious pizza topping of shrimp, escarole, tangy Manchego, and spicy chorizo. He gets his chorizo (the firm kind; the soft one would make the pizza too greasy) from Miami's El Palacio de los Jugos marketplace.
Fragrant and airy, these puffs are perfect for appetizers or snacks.
Mullen's flatbread dough is especially tender thanks to lots of olive oil (to reduce the fat and make a chewier dough, omit the oil. Frozen pizza dough is a good time-saver.
For an extra-savory sandwich, add a touch of grated Parmesan cheese.
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Grappa, an Italian spirit, is made from grape pomace (the skins, seeds, and stems left over from winemaking). Its slight earthiness and high alcohol make it perfect for curing fish, as in David Page's meaty striped bass fillets here, delicately scented with fennel.
Vegetables roast to tender sweetness in less than 20 minutes. When piled onto a polenta crust, the roasted asparagus, mushrooms, and tomatoes are sprinkled with Parmesan cheese for a meatless main dish.
Although high in cholesterol, eggs are a terrific source of bone-building vitamins D and K. Gabe Thompson combines them with nutrient-rich mustard greens in this healthy frittata.
Tonnato sauce -- a smooth puree of olive oil-packed tuna, mayonnaise, capers, and anchovies -- is traditionally served in Piedmont with slices of roasted veal. Chef Andrew Feinberg spoons the sauce onto a plate then tops it with a layer of wood oven-roasted peppers.
Talk about a fusion of world cuisines! Cubes of avocado are folded into chimichurri--an Argentinean sauce made of chopped parsley, cilantro, garlic, vinegar, and oil--to create a Latin variation on bruschetta, a classic Italian starter.
This Sicilian dish features sauteed eggplant, sweet pepper, onion, and celery spiked with vinegar and tomatoes. Serve on toasted Italian bread for a delicious snack or appetizer.