Spiedini: Grilled, Stuffed Meat Rolls


Welcome to my first post!

In our family this dish is called “Spitini” but the Italian term for them is “Involtini”, which are thin slices of meat which are filled and then rolled. If I haven’t confused you enough, sometimes they are also called “Spiedini,” referring to meat cooked on a skewer. In Sicily, they are traditionally made with veal, but are also made with beef. My Father loves to place thin pieces of Cacciocavallo cheese and salami in each roll, but I prefer the simpler version.

You can use metal or wood skewers, but remember to soak wooden skewers before using them. I have a large Barbecue Rosemary Bush that I snip to make skewers out of just for this purpose.

(Spitini, Spiedini, Involtini)

Difficulty Rating: Easy
Makes 4 to 5 servings

2 1/2 pounds top sirloin steak or veal cutlets, thinly sliced (less than 1/4-inch thick) and cut into 4-inch x 6-inch pieces (about 10-12)
1 cup thinly sliced onion
1 cup dry plain bread crumbs
1 clove finely minced garlic
1/4 cup olive oil
1/3 cup grated Cacciocavallo or Pecorino Romano cheese
3 Tablespoons Italian parsley leaves, finely minced
2 Tablespoons toasted pine nuts (optional)
1 Tablespoon dried currants (optional)
1 plum tomato, cut in thin strips
Fresh or dry bay leaves pieces (optional)
Extra virgin olive oil for grilling
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

4-8 Barbecue skewers (Hint: using two skewers placed parallel about 1-inch apart prevents the meat rolls from turning when you flip them over.)

1. MAKE THE FILLING: Heat olive oil in a medium skillet. Add onions and sauté until translucent and golden brown. Add the bread crumbs and garlic and stir continuously until the breadcrumbs are a light golden brown but still moist. Remove from heat, transfer to a small bowl and let cool. Stir in grated cheese, parsley, salt and pepper.
2. MAKE THE MEAT ROLLS: Place one piece of meat on a cutting board or a platter with the short end closest to you. Put a heaping spoonful of filling on top plus a strip of tomato and roll up. Place on a platter seam side down and repeat with the remaining meat.
3. ASSEMBLE THE MEAT ROLLS: Preheat grill to medium high, or turn on broiler. Line up 4 to 5 meat rolls next to each other making sure that the seams are on the insides. Place one fresh bay leaf on each side and between each meat roll. (If using dried bay leaves, tuck a small piece between each meat roll.) Pierce the rolls with one skewer towards the middle of each and then run another skewer about an inch away from the first. Repeat with the other meat roll groups. Brush olive oil on the tops and bottoms and season with salt and pepper. At this time any remaining breadcrumbs can also be pressed on the tops of the rolls. Grill or broil 5-7 minutes on each side.

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