MJ’s Rouladin

September 30th, 2011  |  Family Dinner, Favorites, Moo  |  2 Comments

My foot hurts and I'll leave it at that.  It would be unfair of me to feature one of my MIL's family recipes and talk about my foot instead of what an incredible cook she is.  That's what this post is supposed to be about...not my foot, even though I desperately want to find somebody who will listen to how bad it hurts right now.

Back to the rouladin...I'd never even heard of rouladin until the day my husband requested this meal from his mother for his birthday dinner--the meal he's requested for his birthday dinner for the last 20-something years AND the meal the rest of the family also requests on THEIR birthdays.  So it's special, really really special.  It's authentic German fare I tell you....

Pickles, bacon and mustard rolled in meat...... WHAT?   That was my first thought.

It's one of those dishes you can't explain to somebody with words.  They have to taste it to understand and after I tasted it, I quickly understood.    If you like pickles, mustard and onions on your hotdog, then you will love this dish!   If you like a slow-braised meat (pot roast or short ribs), then you will love this dish!

It takes a little advance preparation...meaning you have to find a butcher that will slice your top round or top sirloin really thin and you may not start prep without first checking that you have a box of toothpicks on hand.  Once you've got those two things, the rest is gravy...literally....as the leftover broth/gravy from this dish will be your dessert!


10 pieces top round or top sirloin, sliced 1/8" thick
yellow mustard
7 pieces of bacon, cut into thirds
3/4  cup diced onion
10 dill spears, sliced in half lengthwise
2 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
2 cups of beef broth, approximately 1 can
1 tablespoon caraway seeds
salt and pepper


I found it best to make an assembly line out of the ingredients when making this recipe.

First, lay out your meat slices and use a meat tenderizer to pound out the slices even thinner.  Then, cut each piece of meat in half.   The slices will not all be "equals" due to the marbling of the meat, but they should all be roughly the same size.   Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Add 1 tablespoon of onions to each piece of beef.

Next, add a slice of bacon, a pickle spear and a squeeze {or dollop} of mustard.

Gently take one side of the meat and fold it over, wrapping each piece around its filling and secure with two toothpicks.  Try to have the toothpicks go in from the same direction and come out around the same part of the roll, so that browning of the little packages is easier.  If the toothpicks are all willy-nilly, you won't be able to get a good sear on them.   Sprinkle again with salt and pepper.

In a large dutch oven, over medium high heat, heat oil.  Working in batches, begin adding the rouladin to the pot.  Allow meat to brown on both sides, about 3 minutes per side.  Set browned rouladin aside on a plate.  Turn the heat down to medium and add any leftover onions you may have, stirring occasionally.  Allow them to cook  for about three minutes and then stir in caraway seeds.   Immediately add the beef broth and gently place the rouladin back into the pot, submerging as many bundles as possible.  Place the lid on the pot and turn heat down to low.  Allow the rouladin to simmer on the stovetop for about 2.5 hours.  About midway through your cooking time, you'll want to adjust the positioning of the rouladin, moving the completely submerged rouladin to the top and the top layer down into the broth.

*You could also place your pot in a slow oven at 300 degrees for  2.5 hours instead of the stovetop if you prefer*

This dish is fabulous served with braised red cabbage and German spaetzle.  Although I have found several recipes for homemade spaetzle, its just as easy and delicious to buy the boxed spaetzle.  I cook it according to package directions (it's much like a pasta--cooked in salted boiling water for 25 minutes) and add 1-2 tablespoons of butter and a tablespoon chopped fresh parsley.

To serve, we pile the spaetzle onto our plates, top with several rouladin and then spoon the pan juices over the top of it all.  Sprinkle some crumbled bacon over the top of the braised cabbage and you will have the most spectacular and authentic German meal EVER!

Thank you MJ for sharing your special family recipe.  I am sorry that I was injured before I boxed up your dinner and had to have my husband {who did not want to share this meal with anyone} do it for me.  I hope you got enough to eat.



2 thoughts on “MJ’s Rouladin

  1. I love that with just a few changes alot of your recipes can be low-carb.
    For those of us with Gluten or Sugar issues that makes them extra special.
    I love the jalepenos stuffed with cream cheese wrapped in bacon sans the
    burger … makes a Great appetizer (or if your me…Meal) And now this one…
    can’t wait to try it.

    You Go Girl! Ruthie

  2. The rouladin looks great. I remember cooking it years ago when we lived in Germany. Thanks for the reminder and the great recipe.

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