Beef Roulade with Olives & Oregano on Rosemary Sunchokes
It is Sunday evening in freezing cold Frankfurt, Germany... we have rain, sleet and snow and subzero temperatures... well, I suppose it is still January! And alas, the only sun I could manage to find this weekend were a handful of sun-chokes at the indoor market! Oh well- we have to make do with what we have, right?
So this evening I had sun chokes and very thinly sliced beef that I wanted to transform into supper. I love the taste of sun chokes- something like a cross between a potato, an artichoke and a water chestnut... and sadly a root vegetable that is much neglected- even by me!
I started off by preparing the roulades and giving them a filling of Kalamata olives and plenty of fresh oregano. I spread these out onto the meat, seasoned with salt and pepper and then rolled the meat slices up nice and tightly. I seared the rolls at a high temperature, with just a little olive oil until they were brown on all sides, then deglazed the frying pan with a splash of Marsala and a little water. I added crushed garlic, salt, crushed black pepper corns, a bay leaf and reduced the heat to a slow simmer... then turned my attention to my side dish...
The main thing to remember about sun chokes is that the oxidize and turn black and unsightly very quickly! So I started off by peeling them and immediately dropping them into my saucepan, which I half-filled with water so that they were entirely submerged. On went the heat, in went some salt and that was the last I saw of them for the next 10 minutes!
10 minutes later, the meat was nicely cooked and all of the juices had reduced down. I added a fresh splash of Marsala and water, just enough to keep the meat simmering and then drained the sun chokes and popped them into a second frying pan, with some olive oil and plucked rosemary, where I let them sizzle away for almost 10 minutes on a gentle heat until they became lovely and brown. I seasoned them with just a hint of nutmeg, salt, pepper and a clove of garlic to perfume the olive oil a little. I flipped them over and over, kept the oil to a minimum and let them toast in their own time...
In the meantime, the meat had become nice and tender and the juices reduced down to be rich and full of flavor. I added a few cherry tomatoes, cut into slices, to add a little fresh and fruity flavor to the juices- and also because they are a super accompaniment to the olives and oregano inside the rolls. I let them simmer with the meat for 3-4 minutes and then turned off the heat everywhere and got ready to serve!
I set the roulades on top of the toasted sun chokes and then spooned the tangy tomatoes and juices over the top... delicious! This was the first time I had prepared the sun chokes in this way and I must say it is my favorite so far! Oh, but those involitni weren't bad either! Hope you try them out and hope you enjoy!