Our favorite fillings for light, dainty Venetian tea sandwiches are asparagus and eggs, tuna and olives, and arugula with cured beef. Serve a selection open-faced for a colorful, eye-catching presentation. Todd Coleman
As a snack or an appetizer, there’s nothing quite as light, restorative, and fun as a sampling of Italian small bites. Mix and match these recipes—plates of grilled polenta, stuffed zucchini and cherry peppers, sweet and sour sardines, and more—serving one or two for a casual get-together with a friend, or a whole spread for a crowd.
Who doesn’t love fried food? Our fried broccoli rabe and Italian sausage ravioli are hearty enough to be a meal in and of themselves. Frittatine di pasta, spaghetti fritters with ham and mozzarella, will also fill you up, as will our veal croquettes or arancini rice fritters. For a lighter fried snack, try anchovy-stuffed zucchini blossoms.
Want more seafood? How about a crostini topped with sardines and salsa verde, or garlicky, pancetta-studded shrimp? Or, if you want to go all out, combine shrimp, fish, and squid for an extravagant fritto misto.
Don’t worry, vegetarians, we have you covered too. Our broccoli rabe, cannellini bean, and ricotta crostini is as satisfying as its meaty counterparts. For an appetizer that could easily double as a main, try our ricotta and roasted pepper frittata. Stuffing zucchini with pecorino and ricotta makes for a rich appetizer or side dish.
With all of these great Italian appetizers, you might not even make it to the pasta course. Check out our collection of Italian appetizer recipes.