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Sicilian meat rolls


Sicilian meat rolls are a typical second course of traditional poor cuisine. In dialect they are called “spitini” which, as you can imagine, literally means “skewers”. In the Palermo area, typical ingredients are used such as pine nuts, raisins, onion, breadcrumbs, bay leaves and caciocavallo cheese, which give the meat a truly particular flavor and aroma. The rolls include a very thin slice of veal containing a delicious filling, which can vary from family to family. Not only is it necessary to use the right filling, but also to place the rolls along a stick alternating them with bay leaves and red onion petals.
A tasty but simple recipe to prepare, which will drive adults and children crazy, especially if the rolls are cooked on the grill. This dish is synonymous with parties, picnics, joy, perfect for Sunday lunch or for a barbecue with friends. The rolls are also excellent cooked in the oven or in a pan. There are several variations but only one result.
Given their goodness, Sicilian-style rolls have undergone several transformations over time, and today they are also enriched with various cured meats and cheeses, as in the recipe for Palermo-style meat rolls. I assure you that with any filling they are a pleasure. They are made with a few simple steps, but you need to follow the right technique to close them without letting the filling escape. We advise you to prepare them in quantity and follow our recipe. It will only take a few steps.


  • 16 veal slices (3×6 cm) cut very thin such as rump, walnut or silverside
  • 60 g stale bread or coarse breadcrumbs to taste
  • 1 Red onion
  • 100 g Fresh caciocavallo
  • 10 g pine nuts
  • 20 g raisins
  • water to taste
  • parsley to taste
  • extra virgin olive oil to taste
  • sale q.b.
  • pepe q.b.

It will also serve you

  • 4 wooden skewers
  • bay leaves to taste
  • 1 Red onion
  • 100 g fine breadcrumbs to taste
  • extra virgin olive oil to taste
  • sale q.b.
  • pepe q.b.
  • First, soak the raisins in warm water for about 10 minutes.

  • In the meantime, finely chop 1 onion and fry it in a pan with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. After about 1 minute, add a drop of water. This way you will obtain gentler cooking. At the end of cooking you will have a wilted and not fried onion.

  • When the onion has wilted and the cooking liquid has evaporated, add the 60 g of stale bread. Mix, add a pinch of salt and pepper. Now turn off the heat and leave the mixture to cool in a bowl.

  • Squeeze the raisins and add them together with the pine nuts to the cooled mixture. Add the grated cheese and mix until you obtain a homogeneous mixture. At this point, mix everything with a drizzle of oil. The mixture must be compact so you can shape it.

  • Also prepare the onion which you will cut in half and then into segments, so as to obtain a pastry to alternate with the meat rolls together with the bay leaves.

  • Prepare the rolls: lay out each slice of meat on the cutting board and add a couple of teaspoons of the previously prepared stale bread mixture. Add a small piece of fresh Caciocavallo cut about 3 mm thick.

  • Then, wrap the meat so as to incorporate the seasoning well inside. Proceed in this way with all the slices at your disposal.

  • At this point and before breading, compact each meat roll with the palm of your hand, pressing lightly.

  • Prepare 2 plates, where in one you will add extra virgin olive oil, a pinch of salt and pepper. In the other, some fine breadcrumbs.

  • Dip the rolls one by one, first in the oil on both sides and then in the breadcrumbs, so as to cover the entire surface.

  • Insert a sheet of onion on a wooden or steel skewer, then a roll and then a bay leaf. Alternate, adding the other meat rolls, bay leaves and onion.

  • Continue in this way until all the ingredients are used up. Usually 4 rolls are added per skewer. Once completed, you can cook them on the grill or over charcoal.

  • Place the skewers on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Sprinkle with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and bake in grill mode, medium power for 15-20 minutes. Turn them halfway through cooking to ensure even browning.Or in ventilated mode at 220°C for approximately 15-20 minutes on the level above the intermediate level.

If you prefer cooking on the griddle, make sure you cook them well on all sides and in the central part where the stick passes.

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