…funnily enough, Fidget did indeed choose to remain silent – not that he could have done otherwise while attempting to conceal his misdemeanour…
Involtini alla pizzaiola
For this homely dish you will need 4 medium (or 6 small) thin slices of beef (traditionally veal, for tenderness), a mozzarella ball (drained weight about 125g) shredded, 60g chopped olives plus some whole olives for serving. For the sauce: a clove of garlic (peeled and bashed), 4tbsp olive oil, 350g tomato passata, a pinch of dried oregano and 1tbsp finely chopped flat-leaf parsley.
Start with the sauce. Gently fry the garlic in the oil for a minute or two (don’t let it brown), add the passata, oregano and parsley. Season and simmer gently while you prepare the involtini (parcels).
To do so, first make sure each slice of beef is uniformly thin (beat with a mallet if necessary) and shaped into a rough rectangle. Then spread some bits of mozzarella and chopped olives on each slice of meat, roll it up (like a cigar) and secure with a cocktail stick.
Add the involtini evenly to the pan with the already cooking passata and simmer for a further 20min or so until the meat is cooked. When you are about ready to serve, add some whole olives to the sauce.
Make sure you’ve plenty of nice bread on hand to mop up the juices and – of course – as Fidget would no doubt testify, remember to remove the cocktail stick before pouching…