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Rouladen is pure German comfort food. Very easy to make.
Rouladen Is German Soul Food
Well, at least that’s what I call it.
My late husband was a first-generation American of German parents and this was a dish he loved. My mother-in-law would make it all the time. The curious thing is my husband was not fond of pickle so mom made a couple without the pickle relish.
I might add these are equally as good if you omit the pickle, but as a German friend said, “It ain’t rouladen then.” She, of course, was correct, but they’re still good.
I do add pickle but in a different form and that makes them even more awesome.
In A Pickle
This little trick with the pickle I learned from a very dear friend who was a chef and a restaurant owner.
Klaus was making rouladen for guests when I stopped in to say hello to him. I noticed that his rouladen had a pickle spear wrapped up in the meat. It made a nice presentation and when I tasted one, it was so delicious I couldn’t wait to use this trick myself.
Of course you can substitute sweet pickle relish for the dill pickle spear. The relish will make them a bit sweet and they are really good. The pickle spear doesn’t introduce any sweetness and the slight sourness adds a beautiful dimension to the beef rolls. I find they lighten up the taste a bit.
Thinly cut round steak is available in the meat case of most stores. However, as you know, the more that’s done to process anything always costs more.
Since you have to pound even the thinly sliced product to be even thinner, why not buy a round roast that you can cut yourself? What I do is usually buy an eye of round roast–whole. I then slice off steaks to be used for the rouladen then vacuum seal the other part to use as roast beef. I prefer the eye of round because it’s a solid piece of meat, but bottom round works pretty well too.
- 1.5 lb thinly slices round steak--8 slices
- 3/4 cup finely diced onion
- 8 slices cooked bacon
- 8 dill pickle spears
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1 tbs butter
- 1 tbs oil
- 1 cup beef stock
- 2 tbs flour
- 1/2 cup water
- Pound round steaks with a meat mallet to about 1/8-inch thickness.
- Heat the butter in a large skillet. Add the onion and cook until it's just translucent. Remove from skillet and set aside.
- Divide the onion evenly over each pounded round steak. Place a slice of bacon over the onion then place a dill pickle spear over that. Roll up and secure each roll with a toothpick.
- In the same skillet you cooked the onions in, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Brown the beef rolls on all sides.
- Add the beef stock to the pan, heat to boiling then reduce heat to simmer, cover and cook for 45 minutes or until the beef is tender.
- Mix the flour and water so there are no lumps.
- Remove the beef rolls from the pan and whisk in the flour/water mixture. Cook for 5 minutes. Add the beef rolls back to the pan and heat for 5 minutes to heat through.