An other great thing about Fall is that since its raining all the time, I don’t feel the need to go outside as much. Which gives me plenty of time to do things indoors, even turning on the oven is a pleasure now, when I think about it, only 8 weeks ago we were going thru a heat wave here in the Netherlands, it’s just so crazy. I had to come up with all these cold dinners to avoid cooking and now we’re piling on layers of clothing.
I am also really excited about december coming up. In december it’s my daughter’s birthday, so that’s a party right there, then there’s Saint Nicholas (Sinterklaas) on the fifth of december, He’s a holy man who comes in from Spain on a boat and gives presents to all the kids in NL. He dresses similar to Santa but with a taller hat. He gives out candy and pepernoten, which is like a very tiny hard gingerbread cookie. Where they come up with this stuff is a mystery to me. I never really celebrated Sinterklaas since my dad was Scottish and we really didn’t grow up much in NL. But now back here there’s really no way around it. I kind of like it though.
I mean the other day I was in town, and there were tons of people everywhere, over-excited children shouting, singing and crying all at the same time, and there he was right in front of me, Sinterklaas on his white horse Amerigo. Scared the living daylights out of me, I just hadn’t expected to see him yet but apparently he had arrived that morning. So it’s official, it’s holiday season. A whole month of eating delicious festive food. YES.
And although I do tried to postpone the festive eating for as long as I can, (because when I start indulging I know it will be until New Years day). I do try to cook things a little more special than ussual without going overboard. So, here I’ve got a really good recipe that is quite festive, not difficult or expensive either. You can easily double the recipe and freeze half for an other day.
8 slices beef topside, top round steak or flank (1/4 inch thick and 4 ounces each)
3 tbsp. pistachio nuts, chopped fine
1 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, peeled and grated
2 tbsp. capers, drained
1 tbsp. minced parsley
salt and pepper
16 slices smoked bacon
8 large slices provolone
24 Basil leafs
1 large onion, cut into thin wedges
2 large pickles cut into Julienne
1 tablespoons olive oil
1 cups beef broth
1 glass white wine (or red)
2 tbsp. pickle juice
1 tbsp. tomato paste
1 tbsp. corn starch
1/2 cup water
Chop garlic and capers very fine and combine with the one tablespoon of olive oil, the parsley and the pistachio nuts. Spread on each slice of steak; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place 2 bacon strips, three basil leafs and the cheese on top. Then add and a few onion wedges and pickles on each slice; roll up; secure with toothpicks, or metal skewers.
Heat a large skillet and brown the brown beef in the remaining tablespoon of olive oil until golden brown on all sides. Add the tomato paste, fry a minute or so and add the beef broth, pickle juice and wine. Bring to a boil. Turn the heat to low, just simmering and cover with a lid. Cook gently for an hour and a half.
Towards the end of cooking, remove the beef from the pan and make a mixture of the corn starch and the water. Add to the pan to thicken the sauce, do not add it all at once, but see how it thickens first. Add more if necessary. Return the beef rouladen to the pan and cook for a few more minutes.
Before serving remove the toothpicks. Sprinkle with parsley to serve.
If you try this recipe let me know! Leave a comment below and don’t forget to snap a pic and tag it #thecookingspoon on instagram! You’ll make my day.
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