Saturday, December 25, 2010

Buon Natale

Merry Christmas!

I am home in Naperville for the holidays and here for a week.

Every year I make my dad's favorite cookies: oatmeal raisin. A few Christmases ago, I tried to make them with white chocolate chips and dried cranberries. He wasn't now we stick to tradition.

Might I add, that they were particularly awesome this year.

We go to the Mertzes every Christmas no cooking for me. Lynn makes Italian Wedding Soup from scratch.  It's great - but last year my mom added something to the meal that everyone fell in love with: Italian sausage bread. It  came from a cookbook that I also own, Rosalie Cooking Italian. Check out the recipe here. (Ironically, her blog looks EXACTLY like mine!) It uses a basic yeast-based pizza dough recipe that you roll out, and then line with sausage and roll up into a crescent shaped bread, like so:


On Christmas Day, my dad had planned ahead to make a bruciuloni (it has several other names such as: braciole, involtini, and rollatini - all of which just mean rolled up stuffed meat in Italian).  He had asked that I share the recipe, so here goes:

Jimmy B's Bruciuloni

1 lb flank steak, or round steak
(preferably VEAL but beef works because veal flank steak is tough to find)
enough bread crumbs to line your steak (1-2 cups)
extra virgin olive oil
shredded Romano cheese
sliced provolone or mozzarella
3 hard boiled eggs, cubed
prepared red gravy (tomato sauce to most people! 
make your own, or buy it in a jar ---but we make our own!)
2-3 leaves fresh basil

1. Have your butcher run the steak through the tenderizer once or twice. When you get your steak home, pound it out with a handheld meat tenderizer.
2. Add breadcrumbs and cheese to a large mixing bowl. Add olive oil until the mixture clumps together. line breadcrumbs over steak, but leave a little room around the edges so that when you roll your meat, you don't lose your filling out the sides. Drizzle olive oil over the breadcrumbs to keep moist.
3. Layer prosciutto, cheese, 1/2 cup sauce, and eggs on top. 

4. Then, roll it up like so (notice we have kitchen twine underneath the meat already):
Make sure your knots are tight, and be sure to tie it lengthwise as well, as to keep all the stuffing inside.

5. Sear it in olive oil on all sides.

6. Cover with your sauce, Romano cheese, and a sprinkle of fresh basil.

7. Roast it low and slow - 275 degrees for ~3 hours.
8. Cut horizontally and serve with extra sauce and cheese.

And then, if you're in the Brocato house, you have pecan pie for dessert! 

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas with family and friends! 
Buon natale from the Brocatos!


  1. Thanks Megz for sharing this wondeful family recipe. Let's not forget Grandma Helen for teaching me how to make this dish.

  2. New Orleans girl, NOLA-KC, learned the secret to the best Sicilian bruciuluni (y'all call it "braciole")....milk-fed baby white veal, wet with a secret herb & spice milk-wash & pounded into soft could eat it with a fork. Apparently, the old Sicilians of New Orleans & Kansas City had a special lock on this recipe. It's a family staple!!!