Antipasti Platter with Labneh Cheese Balls

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antipasto platter sonia cabano blog eatdrinkcapetown
Breakfast antipasto platter for lazy weekend brunch. Photo Sean Calitz

Great for entertaining, big on visual appeal and child’s play to assemble. Raid the deli shelves for this one, to make the most of jars and pickled relishes. Holiday food par excellence.

Serves 8

16 pickled or freshly boiled and shelled quails’ eggs, halved

10-14 labneh or goats’ cheese balls rolled in dukkah (read here how to make labneh at home)

1 x 210g pickled mushrooms, drained

8 marinated artichokes, quartered

8 fresh figs, quartered (omit if on a low carb/high fat diet)

1 cup (250ml) sun dried tomatoes in oil, drained and snipped in half

Large handful of mixed olives

Large handful of rocket

110g ready–made croutons (omit if on a low carb/high fat diet)

Crumbed bocconcini (see note below)

Bocconcini are little fresh mozzarella balls available from most good supermarkets and delis. If you can’t find them, use 3cm cubes of top-quality mozzarella instead.

Ingredients: 400g bocconcini balls or ordinary mozzarella, cut into 3cm cubes

2/3 cup (80g) flour

3 eggs, beaten

1 cup (125g) breadcrumbs

Sunflower oil for frying

  1. Roll the mozzarella balls or cubes in first the flour, then beaten egg and finally coat in breadcrumbs. Repeat two more times for a thorough crumb ‘jacket’ to form. Set in single layer on a plate and refrigerate until needed.
  2. Fry 4 or 5 mozzarella balls a time in hot shallow oil until just golden brown on all sides – not more than 2 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain briefly on absorbent kitchen paper and adding to the platter.
  3. To serve: Arrange all ingredients attractively on a large serving platter, garnish with rocket and dish up!

This recipe first appeared in my cookbook Luscious Vegetarian, co-authored by Jade de Waal . Published by Random House Struik 2012.

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Celebrating life with food, wine, friends & happiness! Writer, cook and blogger. Author of four cookbooks. Passionately South African, proudly Capetonian.