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Beef Braciole - A Family Feast

Grandma Gennaco’s Beef Braciole

Grandma Gennaco’s Beef Braciole is a very special dish! This delicious recipe has been in our family for over 100 years.

Yield: 6-8 servings 1x
Prep: 45 minsCook: 2 hoursTotal: 2 hours 45 minutes


For the rolled meat

  • One 2 pound flank steak (do not use top or bottom round)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 ounces salt pork, coarsely chopped
  • 5 large garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh Italian flat leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 ounces sliced prosciutto, diced
  • 4 tablespoons pesto (use jarred or see here)
  • 1/4 cup Pecorino Romano, grated
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

For the tomato sauce

  • 4 large garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon fresh basil leaves, minced and divided
  • 3 tablespoons fresh mint, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dry oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3 28ounce cans crushed San Marzano tomatoes such as Cento or Pastene brand)
  • 28 ounces of water (rinse cans into one and add to sauce)
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 pound of your favorite pasta


  1. If you feel comfortable butterflying the thickest part of the flank steak, do that now. If not, cut narrow cross hatch marks on both sides, cover with plastic wrap and pound. Our flank was 8X12 inches and after pounding, was 12X15 inches.
  2. Sprinkle the top with the salt and pepper.
  3. In a small food processor, puree salt pork, garlic, parsley and oil to form a thick paste.
  4. In a medium bowl, mix prosciutto, pesto, Romano and pureed salt pork mixture.
  5. Spread this all over the flattened flank steak, leaving a one-inch edge on the furthest long side away from you.
  6. Start rolling the whole long flank into a tight roll, finishing on the open edge away from you, seam side down.
  7. Cut the long tight roll into four to six even logs, depending on the size of your beef.
  8. Using butcher’s twine and tie each end of each roll, leaving one string end of each tie long enough to find it after cooking.
  9. Stuffing the beef
  10. In a large Dutch oven or heavy bottomed pot that has a lid, add the third of a cup of olive oil and heat over medium high heat. Once the oil is hot, sear the beef rolls for 2-3 minutes per side until nicely browned, about 8-12 minutes.
  11. Remove the beef to a platter and reduce heat to medium. Remove and discard any filling that may have leaked out and darkened in the pot bottom.
  12. Add the sliced garlic, ¼ cup of the basil, two tablespoons of the mint, all of the oregano and hot pepper flakes and cook for two minutes, stirring often and starting to scrape up the brown bits from the pan bottom.
  13. Add the canned tomatoes, water, sugar, salt, pepper and bay leaves and stir and scrape up more of the brown bits from the bottom.
  14. Bring the sauce to a simmer then nestle the beef logs into the sauce.
  15. Place a heat diffuser under the pot and place the lid partially over the top.
  16. Cooking the beef
  17. Once the sauce has started to bubble, reduce to medium low and set your timer for 90 minutes. Stir twice during the 90 minutes to make sure nothing is sticking.
  18. Remove the logs to a platter or your cutting board.
  19. Bring a pot of water to a boil.
  20. Use a small ladle and remove and discard the fat that floated to the top of the sauce. This is rendered salt pork fat and can be discarded. Also remove and discard the bay leaves.
  21. Add the butter, remaining basil and remaining mint and stir then remove from heat.
  22. Salt the pasta water and cook your pasta.
  23. While pasta is cooking, remove the twine from the rolls then slice each roll into half inch slices.
  24. To serve, place pasta into serving dishes, top with sauce then add the sliced Braciole.
  25. Serve with additional Romano or Parmesan cheese.

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© Author: A Family Feast
Cuisine: Italian Method: braised