They have already cancelled school for tomorrow for snow and we haven’t even had one flake touch the ground yet. As much as I love a snow day (and I really do – no one likes to stay in their pj’s and do nothing all day more than me), I feel like we have missed so much school this year that we are going to be in school until the 4th of July. I just went and took the puppy for a walk and it has gotten really cold and smells like snow. Tomorrow is going to be a great day to simmer something on the stove all day and make the house smell cozy. Have you ever had braciole before? It was one of my favorite meals that my mom made growing up.
If you have never had braciole, it is basically thin flank steak stuffed with a bread crumb mixture and rolled up. It is browned on the stove and nestled in a big pot of tomato sauce. It is simmered until tender and then sliced. Sort of like a meatball but not with ground beef. I serve it with pasta and the sauce that it has been simmering in all afternoon. If I am really feeling ambitious, I will make a nice dessert too. I feel like rice pudding might be just what the doctor ordered. It is the perfect winter dinner. Even better if it is a snow day.
1/2 cup Italian-style bread crumbs
1 minced garlic clove
2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup grated provolone cheese
2 Tablespoons flat leaf parsley
4 Tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 (1 1/2 pound) flank steak
1 cup dry white wine
3 1/2 cups tomato sauce (homemade or store-bought)
Stir together bread crumbs, garlic, Parmesan, provolone, and parsley. Stir in 2 tablespoons olive oil.
Lay flank steak out. Spread bread crumb mixture evenly over the steak. If using one big flank steak, roll up starting on the shortest end. If using pieces like mine, just roll them however you can so you can keep the most filling inside.
Using butcher’s twine, tie the steaks to secure them. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add 2 Tablespoons olive oil and brown on each side.
Meanwhile, heat the tomato sauce in a Dutch oven. (I was making the sauce at the same time and only have one Dutch oven. If the sauce was already done, you can do this in one pot. Me, I did a lot of dishes.) Add the wine to the pan with the flank steak. Make sure that you scrape up the brown bits from the bottom. That is where all of the flavor is.
Add the braciole to the tomato sauce. Pour the wine over top.
Cover with foil or a lid and bake for one hour in a 350 degree oven. Uncover and bake for another 30 minutes, or until tender. My sauce covered the steak, but if yours does not, baste it with sauce every 30 minutes. Cut the braciole into 1/2 inch thick slices and serve over pasta with more sauce.