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Serve Beef Rouladen with boiled potatoes, sauerkraut or red cabbage and vacation in Germany

Rouladen makes everyday flank steak sparkle

May 18, 2005 - I buy good cuts of meat because there is so much preparation involved with getting less expensive cuts ready to serve my wife.

Still, I will go to the extra work to make foods I like and I like German food. Because there are no good German restaurants in St. Louis anymore, I have no way of researching those dishes when I want to come up with my own version of a particular dish. This is an idea I came up with after eating at Bevo Mill before Augie Bush died. After he passed away the Bevo Mill, a restaurant in a windmill in south St. Louis, lost some of the quality we had associated with it in the past.

Some may feel that flank steak is not a worthy cut of meat, but it is wonderful with German rolled meat logs, or rouladen. The rouladen we ate at Bevo Mill had a white filling inside the meat, but repeated attempts to duplicate that version constantly left me with a runny filling.

Over time I began using only dry food layers over the meat. When I added the red pepper I had moisture but no post oven ooze. When my wife tasted this version, I knew I had a keeper.

Beef Rouladen

1 pounds flank steak

2 garlic cloves, minced

3 tablespoons olive oil

A handful of fresh arugula or baby spinach

1 roasted red pepper, skin removed

6 slices prosciutto

round Gouda cheese, thinly sliced

1 cup flour

1 tablespoon paprika

2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon ground pepper

Place flank steak on work surface and trim the uneven end, reserving scraps for another use.

Using meat mallet, pound steak into something resembling a square that is no more than -inch thick.

Place red pepper under broiler and allow waxy outer skin to turn brown. Be careful not to let the flesh burn by checking often and turning as broiler side becomes brown. Once all sides of pepper are browned, remove pepper from the broiler and place in a paper bag for at least 10 minutes to steam. At end of that time the waxy skin will come off as you rub your thumb over the surface. Cut pepper into slices being careful to remove bitter veins and seeds.

Whisk garlic and olive oil to blend and brush over steak. Cover meat with arugula or spinach but don't spread all the way to the edges. Cover arugula with red pepper slices, then prosciutto, then Gouda slices. Roll meat into a log and tie every so often to maintain shape.

Whisk flour, paprika, salt and pepper in large shallow dish. Roll meat in flour mixture to coat.

Preheat oven to 350 F. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a heavy large skillet over high heat. Add meat; sear for three minutes per side, turning only if meat starts to burn.

Transfer to rimmed baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes.

Let meat rest for 10 minutes then remove string. Cut into 1/2-inch slices and transfer to plates

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