I did mention on the post that Barb started about New Year’s Eve that our usual tradition is to rent a bunch of movies and eat movie food like popcorn and Junior Mints. Since there is the possibility of our having friends joining us for the evening, I am planning a dinner as well (although my kids would be just as happy eating nothing but popcorn and junior mints. :-D)
For dinner, I am going to do what I’ve dubbed as my Antipasto Supper. It is a splendid and festive way to feed friends without making anything really complicated or time-consuming. It involves a table full of food, most of which can be eaten with your hands. Think all appetizers (which is what antipasto is in Italy–the little nibbly stuff before the Prima Piatta.) I am not planning to do everything here, but I’m going to give you a list of things that could be included in an Antipasto Supper. I usually do one simple pasta dish to give a focal point for the meal, but sometimes I don’t. Here’s the list:
- Good crusty bread
- Several varieties of crackers
- Several varieties of cheese, some sliced and some cubed
- Pepperoni or other cured sausages
- Smoked salmon paté
- Vegetables: cucumbers, bell peppers, carrots, mushrooms, broccoli (all raw and sliced, served with some sort of dip like Ranch dressing)
- Stuffed cooked mushrooms
- Marinated artichoke hearts
- Sliced fruit: apples, strawberries, kiwi, mango, etc.
- A bottle each of good red and white wine, maybe even one of champagne
The possibilities are really endless. I do try to stay away from the appetizers that come prepackaged in the freezer section–things like mini-tacquitos, stuffed fried jalapenos, etc.–because they are SO full of fat, and give me heartburn. I generally try to major on the veggies and keep the bread and cheese and meat simple. Feel free to be creative with the things you include on your menu. The point of this meal is to sit around the table for several hours, passing plates, talking, laughing, making large hand gestures, and feeling Italian.
To all of you readers who have found us and shared your ideas and traditions with us in this first year of blogging–thanks, and Happy New Year!