Rose's September Shop Watch Calabrian Antipasti and Black Pepper and Rosemary Olives
Unearthed Calabrian Antipasti and Black Pepper and Rosemary Olives
Antipasti and Olives
A great intro
I realised that whenever I have friends round for a meal, I always serve the same antipasti selection and the same olives with drinks beforehand. Then it dawned on me that it would make sense to tell you about them.
Deciding what to serve with drinks is tricky as you don’t want to spoil anyone’s appetite. It should be savoury and should ideally stimulate not satiate. Which is why olives are always a good thing. And now we are able to buy virtually the same selection of olives as you see on French market stalls. Different varieties like the Sicilian Nocellara or the Spanish Castelreal Gordal or Manzanilla or the French Picholine. And olives with all sorts of different flavours from chilli, basil and garlic, lemon, different cheeses, Moroccan spices and even wild garlic. The ones I order every time are from the company Unearthed, and they are the Black Pepper and Rosemary Flavoured Olives. They are a mixture of black Kalamata and green Conserviola olives, both of which are without stones. They have a spicy lively kick from the pepper and the rosemary gives a herbiness to offset this. I find the bowl gets emptied every time.
Alongside these I always think some kind of salami is appropriate. Again, not too filling but leaves you wanting more. Every supermarket has a wide selection from the fine smooth textured Milano salami seasoned with garlic and pepper to the coarser spicy Napoli. Tuscan fennel salami or finochiona is one of my favourites, the pork being delicately flavoured by wild fennel seeds. A selection of different salami is even better, and again Unearthed comes up trumps here.
I first bought the Unearthed Calabrian Antipasto Platter when we had friends round for a pizza from Zia Lucia (who make the best in London) delivered to us. The pizza I like is a simple margherita with spicy spianata on top, and since this comes from Calabria it seemed a natural. The platter consists of a trio of Calabrian classics: a spicy pepperoncino salami; a Calabrian salami with fennel; and cappocollo (which is like coppa). I have found I stick to this selection even without the pizza, but you can also choose a Piacenza platter from Emiglia Romagna with coppa and salami which would be great before a lasagne; or an Italian selection with Milano and Napoli salami and proscuitto – great before any Italian meal.
Just a word on the company Unearthed which I have written about before. They are an interesting venture whose aim is discovery, and their vision is to introduce accessible and exciting world foods to everyone. Quality is always paramount and their range stretches from hams to sausages to pâtés, Spanish omelettes and even Portuguese custard tarts which I featured last year.
So there you are: a great introduction to a meal.
A little goes a long way
Unearthed Black Pepper and Rosemary Flavoured Olives
Unearthed Calabrian Antipasto Platter