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Involtini di Manzo
main courses | serves 4
There are many variations to this classic dish. Usually it involves a thin piece of steak, bashed to within an inch – or less – of its life and rolled up around a filling. It’s then roasted or fried until cooked through. The meat could be beef, chicken or veal, and the stuffing might include breadcrumbs, herbs, parmesan, garlic and minced salami, bound with egg. It’s common to coat the involtini in breadcrumbs before cooking; and it can be braised or cooked in a sauce, such as the tomato one we’ve used here. A vegetarian version uses strips of aubergine, brushed with olive oil and baked in the oven until browned but still soft enough to roll. Sometimes it’s necessary to use string or toothpicks to hold the involtini together. Word of warning: in the south of Italy, their version is called braciole but if you ask for that up north, you’ll be given a chop. So, get rolling – the only limit to what you use is your imagination.
1. Lay the beef between 2 sheets of clingfilm and bash with a rolling pin or meat mallet until really thin.
2. Combine the breadcrumbs, pine nuts, three-quarters of the chopped garlic, raisins, herbs, a pinch of salt and pepper and a glug of olive oil. Mix well, then divide between the beef, spooning into the centre of one end of each slice. Roll up tightly, sealing in the mixture, then secure with cocktail sticks or kitchen string.
3. Heat a heavy-based ovenproof pan (just big enough to fit all of the rolls snugly) over a medium heat and add a drizzle of olive oil. Brown the beef rolls on all sides. Add the shallot and remaining garlic to the pan and cook for 2–3 minutes, stirring a little to keep the shallot from catching. Add the wine to the pan and simmer for a few minutes, until evaporated by half. Add the tinned tomatoes, and season. Bring the sauce to the boil, then transfer the dish to a low oven (160C/gas 2½) and let it bubble away gently for 1–1½ hours, or until the beef is tender when you cut into it, and the sauce is thick and rich. Serve with a green salad.
Per serving 503 cals, 32.2g fat (8.2g saturated), 30.5g protein, 17.5g carbs, 4.4g sugars
Recipe Kate McCullough
Photo Sam Stowell
from Issue 28
ingredients• 8 x 60–70g pieces of thinly sliced topside of beef
• 70g fresh breadcrumbs
• 50g pine nuts, lightly toasted
• 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
• 4 tbsp raisins
• A few sprigs each of thyme, rosemary and parsley, leaves picked and finely chopped
• Olive oil
• 3 shallots, finely sliced
• 100ml white wine
• 400g tinned chopped tomatoes