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Grandma Galasso's Stuffed Rolled Beef

Braciolone della Nonna Galasso

SERVES 6 TO 8

Grandma Gallasso's braciolone, or rolled stuffed beef, was a great favorite in our house. Round or flank steak was sprinkled with slivers of garlic, then stuffed, rolled and tied, browned, and cooked in tomato sauce. The only thing I did not like was the hard-boiled eggs Grandma put in the center; when I make the dish, I leave them out.

Ingredients

2 pounds top round steak or flank steak, cut about 1/4-inch thick

Salt

1 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper

4 cloves garlic, 3 cloves cut in thin slivers and 1 clove chopped

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese

1 small red onion, thinly sliced

3 hard-boiled eggs, shelled, optional

2 tablespoons Filippo Berio Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

1 tablespoon lard or butter

4 cups crushed fresh (about 8 medium tomatoes) or canned plum tomatoes

1/2 cup water

1 cup dry red wine

1 bay leaf

Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Directions

Lay the meat out flat and pound it with a meat hammer to flatten it slightly to a uniform thickness. Be careful not to tear the meat. (It will be a little more difficult to do this with flank steak.)

Wipe the meat dry with paper towels. Rub it all over with 1 teaspoon salt and the coarse pepper. Sprinkle the slivers of garlic evenly over the meat, then scatter over the parsley, cheese, and onion. Place the eggs lengthwise down the center of the meat so they are touching each other. Starting at a long side, roll up the meat like a jelly roll. Tie the roll with string at 1-inch intervals.

In a large deep saucepan, heat the olive oil and lard or butter over medium-high heat. Add the chopped garlic and sauté until soft. Remove the garlic with a slotted spoon and discard. Add the meat to the pan and brown it on all sides. Lower the heat to medium low and add all the remaining ingredients; add salt to taste. Stir to blend well. Simmer the meat, covered for 1½ hours, or until tender.

Remove the meat from the sauce and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the strings and cut into 1/2-inch slices. Arrange on a serving platter, spoon the sauce over, and serve immediately with pasta.

This recipe is from CIAO ITALIA by Mary Ann Esposito, published by William Morrow and Company, Inc., in 1991.

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