Italian Stuffed Flank Steak

I have made this several times over the past years from the always reliable The New Basics. It’s a nice main dish for a crowd that you can make ahead of time. Our Christmas Eve theme was “stuffed” so this was perfect.

Its not hard to butterfly a flank steak. Just have to go slow.
…on goes the prosciutto…
…roasted red peppers…
…and the pesto. I didn’t follow the recipe, I just used jarred pesto and added some breadcrumbs to thicken it up.
rolled up and ready to go
The finished product. I didn’t get a very good picture… was a bit busy with 28 people over for dinner.

Italian Stuffed Flank Steak
The New Basics Cookbook,  Julee Rosso & Sheila Lukins

8 ounces fresh spinach, trimmed and well rinsed
1/c cup dried bread crumbs
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
¼ cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic
3 red bell peppers, roasted
1 flank steak (about 1 ½ pounds), butterflied
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto
1 fresh hot cherry pepper, cored, seeded, and minced

1. Preheat the over to 350°F.

2. Place the spinach in a saucepan with just the water that clings to the leaves. Cover, and cook over medium heat until wilted, 5 minutes. Drain in a colander, and press out the excess moisture with the back of a spoon.

3. Combine spinach, bread crumbs, Parmesan, olive oil, and garlic in a food processor and puree until thick and smooth. Transfer to a bowl.

4. Peel, core, and carefully seed the roasted peppers. Cut them in half.

5. Open the steak on a work surface, and season with salt and pepper. Arrange the prosciutto in one layer on the steak. Top with a layer of the roasted peppers. Then spread the spinach mixture over them, and sprinkle with the minced cherry pepper.

6. Starting with a long side, roll the steak up jelly-roll style. Tie it with string at 2-inch intervals, and brush with a little olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Place steak in a shallow baking pan.

7. Bake 40 minutes for medium-rare. Cool slightly, or to room temperature, before slicing and serving.

4 to 6 portions

******

For Christmas Eve we also had stuffed shells, little twice baked potatoes, stuffed cabbage, roasted vegetables. Of course we had to have hanky pankies, made a nice smoked salmon spread, cheese and crackers and Sean made some nice bacon wrapped dates stuffed with goat cheese. Kirsten made cream puffs for dessert and Sophia dazzled all with her spectacular macarons that no one can get enough of.

Vegetable Lasagna

Jane Brody

  • 1 ½ cups chopped onion (1 ½ large)
  • 2 large cloves , finely minced (2 teaspoons)
  • 6 oz. mushrooms, coarsely chopped
  • 3 T. sherry
  • 1 T. butter or margarine
  • 2 large stalks broccoli chopped (about 4 cups)
  • ½ lb. spinach, washed well and chopped (about 2 cups)
  • ½ t. low salt alternative
  • 16 oz. (2 cups) low-fat cottage cheese
  • 4 oz. part-skim mozzarella, shredded (about 1 cup)
  • 3 T. grated Parmesan
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley or 1 T. dried
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ t. freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ t. salt, if desired
  • 3 cups tomato sauce (homemade or canned)
  • 8 oz. lasagna noodles, cooked al dente

In a large skillet, sauté the onion, garlic, and mushrooms in sherry and butter until the vegetables are soft.

Add the chopped broccoli, spinach, and salt.  Stir to combine the ingredients, reduce the heat, cover the skillet, and simmer the mixture for about 5 minutes or until the broccoli is tender-crisp.

In a medium bowl, combine the cottage cheese, mozzarella, Parmesan, parsley, eggs, pepper, and salt.

In a baking pan approximately 13 x 9 x 2 inches, spread ½ cup of tomato sauce on bottom.  Layer the lasagna ingredients as follows: Arrange three strips of lasagna noodles on the bottom.  Spread half of the cheese mixture on noodles, then half of the vegetable mixture, and 1 cup of the tomato sauce.  Repeat, starting from the noodles.  End with a layer of noodles topped with the remaining ½ cup of tomato sauce.  Sprinkle the top of the lasagna with additional Parmesan, if desired.

Bake the lasagna at 375 for 25 minutes.  Let it stand for about 10 minutes before serving it.

Stuffed Shells

Evie Davis

  • 2 boxes jumbo shells
  • 16 oz. Grated mozzarella cheese
  • 15 oz. Ricotta cheese
  • Creamed spinach (see recipe below)
  • Ragu sauce

Cook shells according to package directions.  Mix the cheeses and spinach together and stuff the shells.  Arrange in an oiled baking dish;  pour Ragu over noodles.  Bake at 350 for ½ hour.

Creamed Spinach

  • 2 boxes frozen spinach
  • ½ cup butter
  • 2 T. flour
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • salt and pepper

Cook spinach and drain VERY well.  Melt butter in frying pan and sauté garlic.  Stir in flour, add spinach and gradually add cream.  Cook over low heat for approximately 10 minutes, stirring often.  Season to taste.

Spinach Yogurt Soup

Evie Davis

  • 1 small minced onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 packages frozen spinach
  • 2 quarts chicken broth
  • ½ cup uncooked rice
  • 2 cups plain yogurt

Sauté onion and garlic in small amount of oil in large pot.  Add spinach and cook down with the onion and garlic for a few minutes.  Add the broth, salt, pepper, seasoned salt etc..  (Season well – yogurt will neutralize flavor).  Add rice.  Simmer for 20 minutes or until rice and spinach are tender.  Turn off heat and let soup cool down to almost room temperature.  Whisk the yogurt for a minute or two and slowly pour and mix into the soup.  Reheat the soup slowly at low heat as the yogurt will curdle if brought to the boiling point.  (If the yogurt does curdle, the soup is still good).  Can also be eaten cold or at room temperature.

Spinach and Smoked Gouda Balls

  • 2 t. olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • ¼ t. kosher salt; pinch of pepper
  • 1 10 oz. frozen chopped spinach, thawed
  • 1 ¼ cups dry bread crumbs
  • ½ cup grated smoked Gouda cheese
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 T. butter, melted
  • 1/8 t. nutmeg

Preheat oven to 350.  Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over med. Heat.  Add the onion, salt and pepper.  Cook until tender, 5 to 7 minutes.  Remove from heat.

Squeeze the spinach to remove all of the liquid.  Put the spinach in a food processor. Add the onion, ½ cup of the bread crumbs, smoked Gouda, Parmesan, egg, butter and nutmeg; process until completely combined and smooth.

Form 1 inch spheres with the spinach mixture and roll each sphere in the remaining ¾ cup bread crumbs to coat completely.  Place on a foil, or parchment paper lined baking sheet.  Bake until hot and lightly golden, about 10 minutes.  Do not overcook or they will get dry.

Can be prepared and refrigerated up to 1 day in advance or frozen up to 1 week in advance.  Let thaw before baking.