Good oil, special vinegar and a host of cured meats as well as charcuterie, not to mention sundried vegetables sounds like a starter at a grown up party. Normally, it is, but kids love antipasti as much as grown ups, so why leave them out when you're hosting a party? Antipasti is normally served in canapes portions, so it's perfect for their little hands and smaller tummies.
Generally, think one olive, one slice of bread, one slice of meat - one of everything. It's enough to keep them full, and the variety of food will help to educate their palate. It's fun too because the different textures make it a learning experience, as well as a nice way to enjoy some healthy foods like peppers, tomatoes, artichoke, olives, and heart-healthy olive oil.
Cured meats are a key element of an antipasti board, however, after reading in recent news that some cured meats are preserved using nitrates, I've kept this meat-free.
This recipe requires patience, but also time, so it's a make-ahead recipe.
Line a baking tray with baking paper, and add the oil and tomatoes.
Add the rosemary, and garlic. Place in the oven on the lowest setting for 2 hours.
After one hour remove from the oven, toss, and place back in for the final hour.
Remove from the oven and set aside.
Add the tomatoes to a plate along with torn mozzarella.
Season the mozzarella with the oil and basil leaves.
Place the peppers in the same baking tray as the tomatoes. Ideally, you'd cook these at the same time as the tomatoes, but they cook much quicker.
Place in the oven at 160 degrees/gas mark 3 for 45 minutes.
Remove from the oven.
Add to the plate of mozzarella and tomatoes.
Slice the bread into two slices/press the two slices into
Crumble the feta on the side.
Pour the oil and vinegar into a small jar.
Serve alongside the bread and antipasti board.
I always serve a good bread when hosting, rye, being my favourite. If you're not keen on rye, any freshly baked bread from a local bakery will do - you're after that 'just baked' taste, which is only found in baked-that-day bread.
Feel free to pour the oil and vinegar mix on the bread if you wish.
If you really don't have the time to make your own dried tomatoes or peppers, don't fret because shop-bought is just as good. I love the way baked peppers and tomatoes fragrance the kitchen however, and making your own gives you peace of mind because you know exactly what's involved.