Date: June 15, 2008 05:06AM
After reading about how to conquer a womans heart, let me tell you something about conquering mens heart. Ok we all know sex as well acknowledged and proven method, but what to do when you are not in the mood? Try cooking!
When it comes to cooking, my general experience, especially for a bunch of hungry men, plain fare works best. Not this lofty lobster shrimps stuff but something to fill their stomach, warm their hearts and remind them of mama and granny (keyword here: "remind" not to be mistaken for "seen as" or you will find yourself cleaning up for them).
I really thought about which recipe to post here, the choices where Schweinshaxe (knuckle of the pork), a german treat, well known from Oktoberfest with tender meat and crispy skin all over, not so often done at home, or Rinderrouladen a classic german sunday family meal, easy to do and always liked.
So what we are going to cook today is...Rinderroulade with red cabbage and Semmelknödel (the classical german side dishes).
I never wrote any recipe so excuses in advance. I think you will get the point, but meassurements can be wrong.
Rinderrouladen (rolled, filled beef):
12 slices breakfast bacon
about 4-5 pickled cucumbers, quartered, so you got about 10 cm long stripes
some onions cut in half rings
stalt and pepper
some tooth picks or kitchen yarn to fix it
1 extra onion chopped in large pieces and soup vegetables (one carrot, some leek, celery and a sprig of parsley, usually sold as ready bundle), cleaned and cut in large pieces
The beef for the Rouladen usually is cut from a really big chunk of shoulder or round of the beef. When you go to the butcher here in Germany, he knows what you want, when you say 4 Rouladen. It is a thin (8mm), rather large steak about 12 x 30 cm.
Take one roulade, place it in front of you and salt and pepper it. Spread mustard thinly over one side and place the bacon over the mustard, so you have one thin layer of bacon on the meat. On the bacon put some onion half rings and every 7 cm one cucumber stripe. So far so easy. Now the somewhat difficult part. Flap the longer sides about 1-2- cm to the middle and start rolling the roulade up from the shorter end. Look out everything stays in the roulade and fix the end with some tooth picks or the yarn. Prepare all the rouladen.
Take a big pot, heat some spoons of neutral oil, let it become really hot and roast the rouladen shortly to become brown, it isn´t too bad when the bottom of the pot becomes dark brown, it gives flavour, but it shouldn´t be really burnt.
During the last few minutes put in the extra onion and the soup vegetables. Let them roast for some minutes too then put some water (about 500ml), scratch at the bottom to get the flavours off, and let everything cook for about 1 hour or more till tender maybe add some water from time to time.
Take out the rouladen and put the sauce through a sieve to hold back the vegetables. After pressing the vegetables gently, throw them away. Put the sauce back to the pot.
Mix 2 tablespoons of cornstarch with a cup of cold water. Bring the sauce to boil. Now add TEAspoon (!) for teaspoon of the starch-water-mix till the sauce becomes as thick as you like it. Never put too much of it into the sauce or you will get glue, just be patient and do it spoon after spoon. Put back the rouladen into the sauce and voilà : Guten Appetit.
Some general remarks: This dish is very good natured. If you take some mustard more or some onion less, it doesn´t mind. Also cooking it longer doesn´t ruin it. Some add to the sauce red wine or tomatos, but also just water without the vegetables would be fine.