For dinner parties, I always prepare an antipasto platter—it’s easy to simply set out some prosciutto and other cured meats, assorted cheeses, olives, nuts, seasonal fruits and chutneys. For the Super Bowl and other sport-related parties, most people automatically assume putting out a platter of greasy chips and store-bought dips are the easiest way to go, but I have yet to host a party where a well put-together antipasto platter isn’t appreciated.
I usually select four cheeses (Cheddar, Harveti, Brie, Gorgonzola or Humboldt Fog) two loaves of bread (sourdough, baguette) thinly sliced fresh fruit, such as raspberries, apples or pears; dried fruits, such as figs, apricots and Craisins (that's dried cranberries—you can get them plain or dressed in yogurt, I like 'em both ways!); and toasted nuts, such as almonds, walnuts and pecans. For an added sweetness element, I put out a section of homemade jams, fruit preserves, chutneys, and honey. If we’re expecting a larger crowd (more than 10 people), I do put together a platter of crudités with some delicious homemade green goddess dip (can't fail recipe below).
How to make your own antipasto platters: Unwrap the individual cheeses and arrange them on a cheese board, marble slab or large platter. Cover the arrangement and let stand at cool room temperature for several hours to soften the cheeses. Make sure to include a spreader for each soft cheese and a sharp paring knife or cheese plane for hard cheeses! Setup the serving area with an assortment of knives, small plates and napkins. Just our preference, but we like to have a separate beverage station somewhere away from out antipasto platters just to avoid a traffic jam. Your meat products need to stay refrigerated until serving time; the green goddess dip can be served right out of the 'fridge or at room temperature.
One of the wines featured in our photos is one of our favorite Malbec blends, Peachy Canyon's MS Behave.
Your guest are sure to notice the variety and the play on their palate: a bit of sweet, a bit of savory, a bit of salty, and a bit of tangy. Enjoy!
Green Goddess Dip
- 2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh chives
- 2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1 tablespoon roughly chopped fresh tarragon
- 2 tablespoon roughly chopped fresh basil
- 1 tablespoon roughly chopped fresh mint
- 2 anchovy fillets
- 1 shallot, roughly chopped
- 1 pearl onion, roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 3/4 cup sour cream or greek yogurt
- In a blender or food processor, combine the chives, parsley, tarragon, basil, mint, anchovies, shallot, pearl onion, lemon juice and mayonnaise. Blend or process until smooth, about 1 minute or about 15 pulses.
- Transfer the mixture to a bowl and stir in the sour cream. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 3 days. Serve with potato chips and crudités for dipping. Makes about 1 1/2 cups.