Manzo All’Olio Di Rovato Or “Beef In Oil”
A tip of the “Priest’s Hat” from the Franciacorta Region of Northern Italy
An Italian alternative to a classic Sunday beef roast, try this long stewed beef dish from the Franciacorta Region Of Northern Italy
Our recipe this month, Manzo all’olio (literally “beef in oil”), comes from the city of Rovato, by way of the family kitchen of Michele Boglioni and Monica Price. Rovato Beef, as it’s known in English, is an ancient and revered regional dish that can be accurately dated to the second half of the sixteenth century when the recipe was written down by a noblewoman named “Donna” Veronica Porcellaga (1554-1593). The dish consists of a few basic elements: the meat (rump or priest’s hat), anchovies, olive oil, garlic, breadcrumbs and some kind of vegetable.
Like so many traditional dishes, Manzo all’olio is not prepared in any single way, and each method of cooking the dish has been handed down from one generation to the next, so that each family has its secret ingredient to add. This dish is so highly prized, with recipe variations unique to each family and cook, that some of the restaurateurs of Rovato gathered in 2002 to preserve its heritage. According to insiders, the trick is to first sear the beef quickly on all sides so that it then cooks slowly and remains tender, keeping all the juices in.
If you’d like to prepare this wonderful dish, and accompany it in true regional style, enjoy it with a Franciacorta Brut and a side of polenta, another traditional northern Italian staple.
To Prepare Rovato Beef At Home, And Explore The Different Preparations, Visit These Sites
To Explore And Order Franciacorta Wines
Franciacorta and Its Wonderful Sparkling Wines – From Franciacorta Wines
“Vine cultivation has been a constant in Franciacorta, where grapes were grown from Roman times to late antiquity and the Middle Ages, thanks to its favorable climatic and soil conditions. Though it has experienced good and bad periods alike, viticulture in these lands has never stopped. Every Franciacorta winery is open to the public, for tastings and tours to give you an up-close-and personal view of this special region known for producing the best Italian sparkling wines. The history of Franciacorta is strongly tied the presence of large monastic institutions. Even before the year 1000, they had large estates and carried out large-scale work, clearing, reclaiming and cultivating the land. One of the most active was the female monastery of San Salvatore (later called Santa Giulia of Brescia), which was founded in 753 by the Lombard king Desiderius and his wife Ansa.”
More About Rovato and the Franciacorta Region
Rovato is considered the gateway to the beautiful Franciacorta region, very near Lake Iseo. The town is located in the Franciacorta hills, 11 km south of Lake Iseo and 18 km, west of Brescia. Our Italian Lakes District Plus! tour goes through this area, spending two nights around beautiful Lake Iseo, close to Rovato where this dish is from. Franciacorta and the surrounding area is full of historical towns that have a rich medieval and renaissance heritage.