CAVATELLI CON BRACIOLETTE (SMALL PASTA SHELLS WITH CLASSIC MEAT ROLLS)
Adapted from West Coast Prime Meats Cooks © 2015
Classic Meat Rolls
- Three tablespoons (one small bunch) chopped fresh Italian parsley
- Three garlic cloves, peeled and minced
- One tablespoon olive oil
- Quarter-teaspoon ground nutmeg
- Three-quarters-cup (about 2 ounces) freshly grated Pecorino Romano
- One pound beef top round (London Broil)
- Half-teaspoon sea salt
- Quarter-teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- Three ounces thinly sliced pancetta, slices cut in half
- Twenty-eight-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes with the juice
- Quarter-cup all-purpose flour
- Third-cup olive oil
- Half-cup diced onion
- One dried pepperoncino, broken into small pieces
- One garlic clove, peeled and smashed
- Five teaspoons sea salt, plus extra for seasoning
- Half-cup dry red wine
- Six fresh medium basil leaves, torn into small pieces
- One pound dry cavatelli
- Five quarts water
- Two tablespoons salt
- Two tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Quarter-cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano
- One teaspoon chopped fresh Italian parsley
- Cut the top round in half lengthwise, then cut each half in three pieces to make six slices total. Pound each slice 1/8-inch thick. Set aside.
- Combine the parsley and minced garlic in a small bowl. Add the tablespoon of olive oil and mix well, then stir in the nutmeg and three-quarters-cup of Pecorino Romano until blended.
- Arrange the meat slices on a flat work surface. Sprinkle with the salt and pepper.
- Spread the garlic mixture equally over the meat slices. Top each one with a slice of pancetta.
- Roll each slice into a tight cylinder and secure with a toothpick at each end and at the middle.
- Place the tomatoes in a medium bowl and break up with your hands. Set aside.
- Place the flour in a shallow bowl.
- Heat the third-cup of olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat.
- Toss the meat rolls in the flour and coat completely.
- Add the rolls to the pan and cook, turning the rolls until browned on all sides.
- Add the onion, pepperoncino pieces and smashed garlic clove. Cook until the onion is soft, about five minutes.
- Season with salt. Add the wine and cook until nearly evaporated, 1 to 2 minutes.
- Add the tomatoes and basil to the pan. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce heat to low, cover and cook two hours, stirring every 10 to 15 minutes. If the liquid begins to evaporate, add a small amount of hot water to keep the meat moist.
- Approximately 20 minutes before the meat rolls are finished cooking, mix the five quarts of water and two tablespoons salt together in a large stockpot and bring to a boil over high heat.
- Add the pasta, turn heat down to a simmer and cook until pasta is al dente, about 8 minutes.
- Transfer to a colander to drain.
- Remove the meat rolls from the pan. Allow them to rest, then remove the toothpicks.
- In the pan with the tomato sauce, add the cooked pasta, the two tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil and quarter cup of Pecorino Romano. Toss to mix well.
- Transfer to a serving platter. Arrange the meat rolls on top of the pasta and sprinkle with the parsley.
Copyright © 2015 by Amy and Craig Nickoloff and West Coast Prime Meats
Recipes reprinted with permission of the owners.
This Puglian meat dish is equally delicious substituting one pound of pork loin for the pound of beef top round. If you cannot find cavatelli in the store, orechiette makes a good substitute.