Nov 30, 2009

Involtini al Pomodoro

Cooking trends chase each other like waves, and those who follow the fashions accuse people who prefer traditional regional cuisines of granite immobility. Rather than that, you’ll agree that Italian regional cooking displays continuity, and when the current finger food fad or fusion sushi fashion is long forgotten, people will still be enjoying the traditional family dishes. Like for example, involtini.
Involtini are made all over Italy. But this very easy meat recipe from le Marche is one of my favorite regional unfailing meat roll-ups.

Image courtesy of Forchettina

  • 12 veal or tender beef cutlets, flattened (total weight 500 gr = 1.1 lb)
  • 150 gr (3/4 cup) prosciutto, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly cut into slivers
  • 400 gr (2 cups/14 oz) unseasoned canned tomatoes, crushed
  • 1 glass dry, white wine
  • A small bunch of Italian flat leaf parsley, finely chopped OPTIONAL
  • A bunch of fresh basil
  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt & pepper
If your veal cutlets are more than 1 cm (1/3”) thick, gently flatten them out with a meat tenderizer or the blade of your kitchen knife laid flat.
Take the prosciutto, chopped parsley (if you're using it) and a slivers of garlic and combine them, seasoning with salt and pepper. Spread the “filling” over the slices of veal and roll them up, using a couple of toothpicks to hold each involtino shut.

In a skillet large enough to hold all the involtini in a single layer, sauté them in olive oil over a gentle flame, turning them carefully.
When the involtini are evenly browned, pour in the wine and let it evaporate. Add the tomatoes and cook for 20 minutes. If necessary, reduce the tomato sauce by raising the temperature, but in that case remove the involtini from the pan to avoid overcooking. Right before serving them hot, sprinkle the involtini with freshly hand-torn basil leaves. Remember to remove toothpicks before devouring all with crusty bread to sop up the dribbly sauce.

Wine? A nice Conero red or–for those of you who are white wine lovers–a nice Verdicchio di Matelica.


  1. Yum! My husband would love this, I will have to give it a try and will let you know what he thinks. As always, I am suddenly starving when I visit your blog!

  2. If you add a few black olives and some parmigiano to the filling, it's exactly the way I make them.

    Good to see you back!

  3. I know it is hypocritical of me to say I don't eat veal and then admit that I enjoy lamb - but that's how it goes. I was very young when my dad more or less brainwashed me about the poor calves and I've not been able to eat it.

  4. Yum. Sounds great. I will definitely try. Thnaks for sharing Hugs Myriam

  5. yum...lola, i dont know if it good you came back right after thanksgiving...i need to lose a bit of weight for the holidays...smiles. nah, i'm glad you are back.

  6. Now my mouth is watering!!

    I will definitely have to try this!!

    C x

  7. But, Lola, that is braciole to me, no?

  8. I agree! We always come back to the classics. This looks delicious!

  9. A wonderful dish! It looks really tasty!



  10. I love this, as well. This looks like a lovely version of involtini and I will certainly try it! I have a scene in one of my novels with the protag cooking this for a man she's interested in. ;-)

  11. A little pasta, some vino and meal is complete. O yea don't forget the bread!

  12. That looks so GOOD ! How can you do this just when I was starting to feel a little bit hungry after hours of blogging away ???

    And how lucky you are to have received a letter from the President ! Better it would have been you who had crashed his party the other night, bringing him some of your delicious food... as far as I can tell the two people who crashed his party showed up empty handed... now how is that for ungrateful !

  13. It is one of my standby, for sure. Thanks for sharing it with the world. I'm back in Oregon, and ready to cook.

    Good to see that you're back in town as well.

  14. It's past my bedtime but I just had to take a peek at your blog. Now I will be off to sleep with visions of involtini dancing in my head. I fear that my pillow will be soaked with drool when I wake up.

  15. These look fantastic - and I am starving right now. Your blog always entices visually and one can almost smell the wonderful aromas!

  16. We call them Rouladen or Rollfleisch in Germany, and they are definitely every man`s favourite!

  17. Hi Lola! great post as ever, and it looks delicious...

  18. Damn it. I should never read your blog unless I have lunch in front of me. Now my stomach will be growling for an hour before I can placate it.

  19. Stop, please!
    I'm not hungry, but reading this at 11.00pm,I'm salivating. And I've been trying to be reasonably "good" to shed a few extra pounds.

  20. Oh, Lola...looks absolutely delicious!!! And simple to prepare as well!!!! I love this one...snapping it up, and taking it back to my kitchen ;-) ~Janine XO

  21. Mouth-watering goodness....Ciao bella!

  22. Very nice. Interesting because in my family this is called braciole. I made our version for Christmas day. It was a dish that was made for special occasions but I am realizing there are more ways to make and serve this wonderful dish. Thanks for sharing your recipe. I will be trying this next time I make braciole or involtini!


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