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Filled beef rolls in tomato ragu sauce

Filled beef rolls in tomato ragu sauce

Filled beef rolls slow-cooked in tomato ragu with 24-month aged Parmigiano Reggiano PDO

“This traditional Southern Italian recipe takes me back to my childhood days when we would often enjoy a dish like this for Sunday lunch or feast days with all the family.  I have used beef in this recipe, but you can also use pork or lamb.  Thinly sliced pieces of meat are filled with Parmigiano Reggiano PDO, parsley, garlic, pine kernels and sultanas and slow-cooked in tomatoes, resulting in a rich sauce which can be used to dress pasta as a first course followed by the meat involtini as a main course.” 

Serves: 4 people Serves: 4 people

24-month aged Parmigiano Reggiano PDO 24-month aged Parmigiano Reggiano PDO


8 small thin beef steaks for frying 
25g Parmigiano Reggiano PDO, freshly grated & extra for sprinkling 
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped 
Handful of fresh flat parsley, torn 
1tbsp pine kernels 
1tbsp raisins 
salt & black pepper 
400g large rigatoni pasta 
Green salad leaves, to serve 
Toothpicks or kitchen string

For the sauce :  
4tbsp olive oil 
100ml red wine 
1 onion, very finely chopped 
1 celery stick, very finely chopped 
1 carrot, very finely chopped 
2 400g tins of chopped tomatoes 
1tbsp tomato purée, diluted in 300ml of lukewarm water 
Handful of fresh basil, torn


  1. Arrange the slices of meat on a chopping board or a clean work surface and flatten the steaks with a meat tenderiser (if you don’t have one, place a flat wooden spatula over the meat and bash with the palm of your hand.)  Season each with salt and pepper, sprinkle with garlic, pine kernels, raisins, grated Parmigiano Reggiano PDO and parsley.  Roll each slice tightly and secure well with toothpicks or with kitchen string 
  2. Heat the olive oil in large saucepan.  When hot, lower the heat, add the meat rolls and seal well on all sides.  Increase the heat, add the red wine and simmer until reduced by half.  Remove the meat and set aside.  
  3. Add the onions, celery and carrots to the pan and stir well.  Cook until the remainder of the wine has nearly evaporated, then put the meat back in the pan, and pour over the diluted tomato purée and the chopped tinned tomatoes.  Season with salt and pepper, add the fresh basil, stir well, lower the heat, partially cover with a lid and cook for 1.5/2 hours.  Stir from time to time and check for seasoning.  
  4. Towards the end of cooking time, bring a large pot of salted water to the boil and cook the rigatoni until “al dente.”  Serve the tomato sauce with the cooked rigatoni and sprinkle over grated Parmigiano Reggiano PDO. Then serve the meat rolls as a main course with a green salad.  
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