What to suggest to somebody as typical Dalmatian meat dish?
In Pasticada you can find almost all smells and flavours typical for Dalmatia: olive oil, garlic, rosemary, bay leaves, thyme, parsley, prunes, dry fruit, vinegar, Prosek (dessert wine), panceta (special dried bacon) – all together combined in an interesting sour-sweet taste.
It requires long preparation, but once it is ready you can keep it in your fridge for a week. Because of this and because of its reputation of traditional Dalmatian dish, Pasticada is very popular in this area and is served at almost all festivities and celebrations.
To prepare it you’ll need some time, it requires extra patience more than effort, but preparation in itself is quite simple.
INGREDIENTS: (for 12 persons)
- 2,5-3kg beef (eye round roast) “govedi frikando” (that is the best meat for “strong” thick, dark sauce)
- 15 dkg thick sliced dried bacon with bark
- 1 big garlic (sliced)
- 3 big onions (cut in 4 pieces)
- 10-15 cloves
- few bay leaves
- few black papers
- 1l vinegar
- Rub the meat with salt from all the sides.
- Then make slits 2-3cm deep with sharp knife on all sides of meat. Stuff it with bacon, garlic and cloves.
- Take a big, deep pot and put inside all dry ingredients and afterwards the meat, add vinegar, cover the pot and keep in the fridge for 24 hours (not less). Meat must be completely covered with liquid, so add a bit of water as well.
INGREDIENTS FOR PAŠTICADA:
- 1 1/2 dcl olive oil
- 5 big carrots (sliced)
- a piece of a dry bacon bark
- 1 parsley (finely sliced)
- onion, rosemary, bay leaves from marinade
- 1/2 l Prosek ( any kind of dessert wine )
- 7 dl red wine`
- 20 dry prunes
- few dry figs
- 2 nutmegs (grated)
- a piece of lemon peel ( 1cm )
- 2 tbs sugar
- After 24 hours take the meat out of the marinade, drain it and wipe it gently
- Filter the marinade, but keep aside onion, rosemary and bay leaf. We don’t need the rest of vinegar.
- In a deep, large pot heat the olive oil and fry meat from all sides until it gets brownish. Take the beef aside on a plate and cover it with dish clout.
- Put stuffs from marinade in the same pot (with oil) and cook it until they are completely soft.
- Than add: carrots, prunes, dry figs and stewed it 20-30 minutes, stir it occasionally and add a little bit of water if necessary.
- Finally put inside the meat and the rest of spices and add Prosek and red wine.
- Cook it for 5 hours on low heat.( time depends of the weight of meat )
- When it’s done, take away the meat and cut it in slices of approx. 1,5cm. The rest of vegetables smash with hand mixer.
- Put the meat slices in the mixture and cook it for next 30 minutes on very low heat
- In the meantime caramelize sugar and add it to the meat and sauce. Add some salt as well.
Serve it with gnocchi, the traditional version. Also it perfectly goes with polenta noodles and mashed potatoes.
Glass of red wine (Plavac mali from peninsula Peljesac – rich in flavours of dark fruits, pepper and spice) is welcomed as well.
Once you decide to make Pasticada, it is perfect time to learn how to make a gnocchi as well.
A taste of DIY gnocchi cannot be compared to those from the supermarket.
It is not a big deal ( although it may seem complicated ), you need just half an hour of spare time and:
INGREDIENTS: ( for 6 persons )
- 1kg old potatoes ( should be old)
- 1 egg
- 50g fat or butter
- 700g – 1000g flour
- Cook potatoes with the crust ( do not peel it beforehand, it is much better for structure and taste of a gnocchi )
- When the potatoes are cooked, peel them while still warm( it is easier to make proper dough).
- Then put the potatoes in a mixing bowl and mix with hand mixer. Add an egg and fat, mix it a bit.
- Now you can use your hands and make a dough on a kitchen board.( extra tip: sprinkle it with flour beforehand ).
- Gradually add flour while you are forming a ball of dough.The dough should be smooth and even.It is ready when it is stops sticking to your hands. Divide it into 3-4 equal balls.
- Using your palms (floured) roll each piece of dough into roll thick 2-3cm and cut it with knife into piece 1cm long.
- If you want, press each gnocchi on the grater, in this case sauce of Pasticada will better permeated with gnocchi.
- Put a water in a big pan, add a pinch of salt.Cook gnocchi in boiling water for 2-3 minutes.They are cooked when they are floating on the water surfaceSpread cooked gnocchi into a pan and pour a bit with a sauce.That way you’ll avoid sticking.