Last night I made a dish I haven’t prepared in a very long time—a braciole. That’s basically an Italian equivalent of German rouladen.

I took a flank steak, pound it out to about twice its original size, stuffed it with Italian sausage and lovage, rolled it, browned it, and then braised it for several hours in a tomato sauce. The incredible aroma that wafted through the house while the braciole was braising can only be imagined.

My original recipe called for celery leaves rather than lovage. I have a lot of lovage. My lovage plant is now about two meters tall and looking out my kitchen window at it inspired me to substitute its leaves for celery leaves. It worked well.

I know that lovage was a popular salad herb in the Middle Ages but it’s awfully robust—a powerful celery flavor—and I’m not sure I’m ready for that.

3 comments… add one
  • CStanley

    One of my favorite dishes yet I’ve never attempted to prepare it. Is there some type of bread crumb mixture in with the sausage and celery/lovage?

  • My recipe doesn’t call for it but I can see that some sort of filler might be to the taste of some. Since my reflex is to approach any given dish with a French sensibility I see no need for it.

  • I’ve never even heard of it but it sounds like something I like. My mother made rouladen on special occasions when I was growing up and I was a big fan, so long as she left out the pickles in mine.

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