Braciole (also spelled as Brasciole) are a typical dish from the province of Bari in Puglia. Braciole are bundles of beef, stuffed with a mixture of parsley, garlic, and cheese, and then cooked low and slow in a tomato sauce. As with many Italian recipes there are variations. According to the Italian wikipedia it is supposed to be made with horse meat rather than beef and with the addition of lard (probably because horse meat is very lean). You could also use red wine rather than wite, or basil rather than oregano. Even though this dish seems very similar to the version from Naples (meat cooked in tomato sauce), the parsley and cheese give it a very different fresher flavor.
To make a complete dinner out of the braciole, you can use part of the sauce to serve over pasta first, and then serve the meat with the remaining sauce and a green salad. The traditional pasta shape for this would be orechiette (the pasta shape most eaten in Puglia), but I like the sauce-absorbing qualities of fusilli better.
This is the version from Biba Caggiano’s “Modern Italian Cooking” is made with sirloin, i.e. tender and lean beef. You could also use a tougher cut of beef and cook them for a longer time.
2 slices of beef sirloin, pounded thin (ask your butcher for scaloppine from beef rather than veal), about 300 grams (.66 lbs)
1 can peeled tomatoes (400 grams/14 oz)
1 Tbsp fresh oregano leaves, or 1/2 tsp dried oregano
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbsp chopped fresh flatleaf parsley
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
6 Tbsp freshly grated pecorino or parmigiano
80 ml (1/3 cup) dry white wine
This is good with a red wine from indigenous grapes from the province of Bari with good acidity: Castel del Monte, or another red made from Uva di Troia grapes. Wines made from other indigenous grapes with good acidity like Gaglioppo or Aglianico would also work, also if they are from Campania or Calabria rather than Puglia. Primitivo or Negroamaro wines such as Salice Salentino or wines made with new oak are be too heavy and would overpower the fresh flavors of the braciole.