Photo by Dave Weidner- Traverse Magazine 2017

Beef Braciole Pinwheel Style with Horseradish and Green Apple Gremolata


The White House invited Mario Batali to design the menu and serve as chef for President Obama’s final State Dinner, when he hosted the prime minister of Italy. We asked Mario to share his recipe for the main entrée.


  • 6 15-inch long pieces of twine
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1⁄4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 4 ounces thinly sliced salami, cut into matchsticks
  • 8 ounces Italian fontina, cut into 1⁄4-inch cubes
  • 1⁄2  cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1⁄2  cup toasted breadcrumbs
  • 1⁄4 cup plus 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • One 10-inch-long beef tenderloin roast cut from the heart of the tenderloin (21⁄2 to 3 pounds), butterflied (see note)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Horseradish and Green Apple Grenolata
  • 1 cup of green apple cut into matchsticks
  • 1  cup of fresh horseradish cut into matchsticks
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2  tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Sautéed Broccoli Rabe
  • 4 cups broccoli rabe
  • 1⁄4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely sliced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Juice of 1⁄2 lemon


In a medium bowl, combine the garlic, scallions, parsley, salami, fontina, Parmigiano, and bread crumbs and mix well. Add 1⁄4 cup of the olive oil and mix well with your hands or a spoon. Set aside. Cut six 15-inch-long pieces of kitchen twine. Open out the beef, season on both sides with salt and pepper, and place it on a work surface so a long side is toward you. Spread the bread crumb mixture evenly over the beef, leaving a 1⁄2-inch border along the side farthest from you; press and gently pack the stuffing mixture onto the beef to keep it in place (you may have a little stuffing left over—it makes a great panini filling). Starting from the side nearest you, roll up the meat like a jelly roll, pressing any stuffing that falls out of the ends back into the roll, and tie tightly with the twine, spacing the ties evenly (it’s easier if you have a friend to tie the beef while you hold the roll together). Wrap tightly in plastic wrap to make a compact roll, and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, or as long as overnight.
To make the gremolata, combine the horseradish and green apple matchsticks in a medium mixing bowl. Add lemon juice, olive oil, and a pinch of salt and mix well by hand.
To prepare the broccoli rabe, trim stems, bring 4 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot and add 2 tablespoons kosher salt. Add the greens and blanch until crisp-tender, about 2 minutes, and plunge into an ice bath. In a medium sautée pan over medium-high heat, add olive oil and garlic and stir to be sure it doesn’t burn. Add the broccoli rabe and cook until the greens are flavored and cooked through with a slight bite, about 5 minutes. Finish with salt and pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice. Carefully unwrap the beef roll and, using a very sharp knife, cut it between the ties into six 11⁄2-inch-thick pinwheels. Brush gently on both sides with the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Note: To butterfly the beef, simply use a sharp knife to cut it horizontally almost but not all the way in half, starting from one of the long sides, so you can open it out like a book. (Also, good demonstration videos online.)