Merciful God, You are great in compassion and Your tenderness for us is without measure. We ask You to give us today our daily bread, and also provide for the needs of all of Your hungry children around the world. Through Christ Your Son and Our Lord. Amen.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009



I mentioned in my menu post that I planned to make Braciole for college boy on Sunday. If you've never had Braciole, it's an Italian dish of beef rolled with herbs and bread crumbs and cheese tucked inside and simmered in tomato sauce. It's one of college boy's favorite dishes and he brought his room mate home to enjoy it as well. When I prepared it I had my camera handy to photograph the steps -- all but the eating!

This recipe is a process and not a short one. It's also messy -- so don your apron before you get started. I recommend having every thing in place before you begin (mise en place), because once you start, you don't want to have to touch kitchen cabinets or drawers (I did wash before I handled the camera).

This recipe is based on the one found in Cooking with My Sisters by Adriana Trigiani. It's the first recipe for braciole that I ever tried and I've modified it a little for our taste.

serves 8 to 10

4 lb. top round steak, 1/4 inch thick cut into 4x6 inch slices (mine were thicker this time, but they were all the grocer had available -- that just means more pounding for me)
2 c. chopped Italian parsley
1/2 c. chopped basil
1 c. seasoned bread crumbs
3 T. minced garlic
1 1/2 c. grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (at the price of Parmigiano-Reggiano, I just use the stuff in the green can)
salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
⅓ c. olive oil

big pot of sauce (my recipe can be found here)

In small bowls, combine the parsley and basil, set aside; combine the bread crumbs and garlic, set aside, place the Parmesan cheese.
Cut your cooking string -- about 2 feet for each piece of meat.

With your meat mallet, pound the meat to tenderize it and thin it out -- being careful to avoid making holes.

These were not quite as thin as I like, but they were as thin as I could get them without making huge holes. Try to find thin pieces to begin with and then you don't have to pound them to smithereens!

Sprinkle each piece of meat with the herb mixture -- making sure you have enough for each piece.
Then sprinkle with bread crumbs, and then cheese. Salt and pepper goes on top of the cheese.

Roll the meat, tuck in the ends, and secure with twine.

Brown the meat in olive oil over a low temperature and turn it gently.

Transfer meat to pot of basic spaghetti sauce and simmer for 60 to 90 minutes, or until tender.

Bye bye baby.

To serve, remove the meat from the pot and place on cutting board. Remove the twine and let the meat cool for five minutes. Then cut in 2-inch slices, like a jelly roll and arrange on a platter by itself or with other meats from the sauce.



Rettabug said...

Barbara, I can't tell you how much I appreciate you taking the time to photograph each step of this dish.
I have heard of it many times but never eaten it. That is about to change very quickly!

I am making a grocery list right now & can't wait to try it.
Thank you so much for sharing your version. Its looks DELICIOUS!!

Amy Caroline said...

Oh heavens, I don't know whether to cry or whipe the drool off my keyboard! That looks soooooo good! Thank you!

MAB said...

Thanks so much for posting this! I haven't thought of braciole in ages. It brought back a flood of memories of dinner at my Italian aunt's home when I was a little girl. She would make hers from scratch, too. I remember she used a different cheese, either provolone or mozzarella, in the middle, something white and creamy. Delicious. And I do have steak in the freezer....

marcie melancon said...

This is something I have always wanted to fix! It looks delicious!!! Thanks for the step by step and the pictures.

Cheryl M. said...

Oh, this looks DELICIOUS! I'll make it over the Thanksgiving holidays when my boys are home! thanks :))

Beth F said...

I am so making this for dinner tonight...I am very excited! :) A nice salad on the side, perfecto! :)