Italian appetizers come in large varieties, from the antipasto dishes, salads made of fresh vegetables, to the herbal bread with olive oil and garlic. Some pasta sauces may be used as dressing for salads, such as pesto, a green sauce, made from basil, pine nuts, olive oil, garlic, and parmesan cheese. Bruschetta is probably the best known Italian appetizer, and consists of baked bread with garlic, olive oil, tomatoes and basil. It is usually served hot in fancy restaurants before the main course. Other great appetizers include the pinzimonio (fresh raw vegetables), pickled onions, artichokes packed in oil, grilled bell peppers, pickled eggplant and even octopus and onions with sardines. Fried calamari is a great Italian appetizer usually served in fancy restaurants before dinner, and a basket of herbal garlic bread and olive oil are offered from the house. The herbs in the bread offered as appetizers, include basil, oregano, dill, parsley and seamy seeds.
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