Happy Monday folks! It time for the Merry Christmas Week food blog post.
This weeks post is about a dish that I grew up with. Some of you may know from reading Michelle’s blog that my mother was from Germany. I have been, along with the help of my sister, trying to re create her recipes. So I want to give a little back ground about her coming to this country.
Mom met my father while he was working for the PX service after the war. They were married in 1950 and she came to this country on the steam ship Europa arriving and processing through Ellis Island. They moved to his family farm in deep south Georgia where they lived until he took a job that brought him to Atlanta. I grew up in a suburb south of Atlanta. So I am a southerner by the grace of God …LOL. Now Most of you kind of know what we sound like when we talk right? I want you to think about how a transplanted German girl would sound like to us, not all that easy to understand. Mom persevered with the transition from beautiful German girl to a beautiful Southern Peach and lived here till she passed in 2009. Mother was an awesome cook and would prepare these wonderful German dishes for us. One of the things that my sister and I would laugh about is the way that a southern drawl drifted into her German accent. There were just some words that would not translate well for her. Since her passing my sister and I have been digging through her recipes, and I have been re working her recipe for Rouladen, mom called this redo “Veal Birds”. I was certain that this name was incorrect and that her mangling of Southern English had us not hearing the proper pronunciation. I was WRONG. There really is a dish called “Veal Birds”
and it is similar to what the Germans call Rouladen.
In the past, I have been calling the recipe I have Rouladen because of what I said, I thought that I was hearing the name wrong. So now I know we were hearing her right, so it’s Veal Birds we are making. Thanks Gretel! You’re always surprising me…..
This is a great meal, rather cheap to make and takes about 2 hours from start to finish. The meat needs to be thin sliced, it can be veal, beef, or venison. Needs to be about 3/8 inch thick ¼ inch works better. The rolls need to be no more than 5 to 6 inches wide 4 inches is acceptable. Your looking at having the meat be rectangular so it needs to be long enough to roll over the stuffing and secure to keep it from unrolling during cooking. You can use kitchen/butchers twine to tie off the rolls or tooth picks to do this. I like the twine because I can never seem to make the toothpicks to hold. Depending on how many veal birds your going to make the weight of meat is at your discretion. I usual get between 3 to 4 lbs max. I use either Cube steaks or Top sirloin fajita thickness sliced (make sure it is wide enough.)
So here we go:
3 to 4 lbs of meat (veal, beef, or venison)
German HOT mustard (You can use any mustard you want. I just like this type.)
½ cup of bacon chopped/diced
½ cup medium white onion chopped/diced
½ cup of Gherkin dill pickles chopped/diced
Pinch of Kosher salt
Pinch of fresh ground black pepper
Dash of Maggie or Soy sauce.
Roll of kitchen/butcher’s twine or flat toothpicks
An variation is that you can add mushrooms or chopped celery or blue cheese if you want. I did not for this post.
To assemble these your going to cut your meat into workable sections rectangles that are longer than they are wide. Make sure they are long enough to cover the stuffing with enough to overlap about ½ to ¾ of an inch. Add a dash or 2 of Maggie seasoning (or Soy sauce) per meat section Spread your Mustard on the meat like you would a slice of bread. Keep it about ½ inches from the edges. Add your pepper and salt then a small amount of bacon, onion and pickles. Roll the meat up (this is where you can measure if you have too much stuffing or not enough and adjust) I use the twine and tie off the meat in the rolls. I usually only need to tie 2 pieces of twine in place to hold them together. If you have to use 3 then it may be too long. The twine is around the diameter of the roll but you can tie one length wise if you feel the need.
Preheat your pan with some oil and place your rolls seam side down to seal the edges together. Brown these in batches if necessary to make sure not to crowd the pan. Brown on all sides and transfer to a baking dish and add enough water to cover about ½ of the rolls, if you have any left over bacon I usually put this in the dish to help flavor the rolls. Y
Place this in the oven at 350 for 1 hour. The water will cook down and can be used as a sauce over Spätzle or potatoes. I also cook chopped spinach (http://www.fromcalculustocupcakes.com/spinach/) to round out this meal. Let me know what you think.
I hope you have a great holiday and if you can, check back for more next Monday.