Puglia Party Day 8 – Involtino di Manzo al Ragu


Ok, so this isn’t supposed to be made with beef, it is in fact a recipe that call’s for horsemeat. Widely eaten in Puglia and considered a delicacy. It’s lean, tender and low in fat. Consumed for many years, horsemeat was a good source of protein for agricultural communities. It has cucina povera written all over it – waste was not an option.

Now, unless I buy incredibly cheap beef and hope for horse, I don’t think I’ll be able to get hold of it here unless I go to a specialist. As well as the high cost involved, quite frankly I’m not that keen. Previous visits to the region have more than likely involved consuming horse, whether I liked it or not. A festival of food I attended in the next village from ours involved eating a suspect meat that tasted like no other I knew – Horsey.




500g   Braising beef (4 pieces)

500g   Tomato puree

50g     Pecorino cheese

25g     Capers

1          Garlic clove

1          Glass of red wine

Small bunch of parsley

Olive oil

Salt and pepper



  1. Tenderise the meat slices by hitting them with a mallet.
  2. Top with the grated pecorino, capers, parsley and black pepper.
  3. Roll the meat slices up and secure with a couple of toothpicks.
  4. Put a generous amount of olive oil in a saucepan. Add the roulades and garlic, fry. Make sure to seal all the edges of the meat.
  5. Add the wine and allow to evaporate.
  6. Add the tomato puree and salt, then a splash of water.
  7. Cook for at least 3 hours on a low heat, adding a little water if it starts to stick.

Served with chicory and fava bean puree

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