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  • Beef Roll-Ups

    Fabio, a friend of a friend who lives in Ostuni and loves to cook his family recipes, shared this one with me. One sunny spring day, Fabio and I made some of his mother’s recipes and then shared the results with a group of friends. It remains one of my fondest memories: When I think of that day, I can taste the tender meat and the soft, creamy scamorza cheese oozing out of it. This recipe uses smoked mozzarella cheese, as scamorza is difficult to find in the United States. Serve with the Roasted Potatoes and Breadcrumbs (see recipe) and a full-bodied red wine, such as a good Aglianico or the Salice Salentino Riserva.

    • 6 thin slices sirloin*
    • 6 slices speck or prosciutto
    • 2 ounces (56 g) smoked mozzarella cheese, cut into long sticks, about ¼-inch
    • (.5-cm) thick
    • 3 tablespoons (45 mL) extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
    • 1½ cups (354 mL) dry white wine
    • 1 cup (236 mL) tomato juice (the juice from 1 [14-ounce (392-g)] can tomatoes)
    • Salt, to taste
    • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

    1. Place the slices of beef on a clean work surface. Cover them with plastic wrap and pound them to a 1/8-inch (0.25-cm) thickness.

    2. Place a slice of speck on each slice of beef. Put a piece of mozzarella cheese on one end and roll up the meat, securing the ends with toothpicks.

    3. In a large pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high. Add the roll-ups and cook until they are browned on all sides, about 3 minutes per side. Add the onion. Stir to release any browned bits from the bottom of the pan and cook for another 2 minutes, until the onion starts to soften.

    4. Add the wine and cook until the alcohol evaporates and the wine is reduced by half, about 4 minutes.

    5. Add the tomato juice. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan, and cook for at least 45 minutes. The beef roll-ups should be very tender when pierced with a fork.

    6. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot.

    * Ask your butcher to thinly slice a sirloin roast.

Copyright © 2010 Viktorija Todorovska. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without express written permission from the publisher.

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