"Rags" of Beef with Arugula (Straccetti con Rughetta), you don't get any simpler than this that delivers incredible flavor and texture. Succulent strands of beef meet fresh and steamed arugula in a dance your tastebuds won't forget!
"Rags" of Beef with Arugula (Straccetti con Rughetta). Italian stir fry at its best!
If it wasn't for Nicoletta, I would have never known this dish. I was so intrigued to find out that Roman cuisine also stir fried in its own traditional way. You may already know this, however I will say it again. I absolutely love stir fry. It is a great way to achieve fresh, juicy, tasteful end results with very little time involved.
This dish brings back many memories of the incredible butcher shops called "Macelleria" in Italy. You can ask the butcher anything and when it comes to these "rags" of beef, straccetti (stra-che-tee), it is not uncommon to find the thin strands of filleted beef ready for you at the pleasure of these wonderful artisans! The dish is traditionally known in Rome and actually Rughetta (ru'-ɡe-ta) is the Roman word for Rucola (ˈru-ko-la), Arugula/Rocket. This jewel of a dish is like sacred texts of an old testament to flavor and texture, called true Italian regional cuisine!
Less is better!
Really there are few ingredients needed for this dish. This is what you need:
- Very thin sliced beef (inside round, or sirloin)
- Olive oil (always cold pressed extra virgin D.O.P. olive oil)
- Arugula (we use organic)
- Garlic (organic)
- Salt and pepper
- Lemon juice (organic)
- Shavings of Parmigiano Reggiano, optional but very tasty
Equipment for "Rags" of Beef with Arugula (Straccetti con Rughetta)
Again, very little needed from the kitchen cupboards for this one. Take a look:
- Medium sauté pan
- A bowl for the arugula
- Meat cleaver
- Wood board
- Serving platter
A less than five minute dish:
What if I told you that in less than five minutes you will have a tasty dish to serve to your family? Sounds pretty intriguing right? Especially for the busy lifestyle that a family may present in this day and age. Well, today I am going to show you that it is really true. Come let's get into the kitchen and whip up some of these "Rags" of Beef with Arugula (Straccetti con Rughetta)!
It starts with the beef!
One of the things that you will always see in this type of Italian cooking is that we drizzle the oil into the pan and then press and throw the garlic whole. After the dish is just about completed, out comes the garlic. The reasoning is that we need just a bit of that garlic infused in the flavors. Italian cooking is all about great ingredients and letting all those ingredients shine without one overpowering the other. Here is how we do it:
- Firstly, with a meat cleaver, gently pound out your rags of beef. Drizzle olive oil into the sauté pan. Usually just enough to coat the pan. Peel, press, and toss in the garlic, and give it a swirl in the oil. We want those garlic hints to play with the oil and eventually dance with the other ingredients.
- Secondly, turn the heat to a medium to high setting. Once the garlic starts to sizzle, in go those lovely rags of beef, season with salt and pepper. With tongs, move beef around the pan and turn over. The whole process takes about a couple of minutes.
- Thirdly, once the beef is browned, turn off the heat, grab a nice handful of arugula and toss in, then, season with some more salt and pepper. Give it another good stir. Take garlic out at this point.
- Lastly, squeeze in some fresh lemon juice, and finish with a nice drizzle of olive oil.
Place some more fresh arugula into a nice serving dish, creating a bowl, and spoon the "Rags" of Beef with Arugula (Straccetti con Rughetta) in. Don't let all that juice from the pan slip away. Pour it over the top of the dish. That's it, my friends! Pretty easy, right?
You have the option of finishing with some shaved Parmigiano Reggiano (or Grana Padano), if you want. It does add another hit of beautiful flavor!
Time to taste this amazing "Rags" of Beef with Arugula (Straccetti con Rughetta)
I love the aromas. That beef so earthy sweet, the arugula with its peppery scent, the lemon, and garlic are a symphony to my senses. I have to get a forkful to taste. Wow, the beef is so tender and succulent, it just melts in my mouth. The lemon is wonderfully subtle and is a great partner to the olive oil and arugula. I love that there is a dichotomy of texture (fresh and sautéed), in the arugula, which offers nothing but pleasure to the palate. I have to say beef and arugula are a match made in heaven. For those who try the shaved Parmigiano, this is a real treat. Its saltiness and sharpness are a very welcomed delight to the totality of this dish.
This "Rags" of Beef with Arugula (Straccetti con Rughetta) was the "Secondo", the meat dish of a "Dalla Tavola" restaurant takeover menu we did at the end of August. We had so much fun and had the pleasure of presenting a 5 course traditional Roman Italian meal!
I hope you enjoy this dish as much as we do.
- 250 g very thinly sliced inside round or sirloin beef
- 2 Tbsp evo oil
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and pressed
- salt and pepper to taste
- 3 cups arugula
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
- drizzle of evo oil
- shavings of Parmigiano, optional
- Firstly take your beef fillets and pound them gently with a meat cleaver. Place fillets on a parchment lined board.
- Get a medium sauté pan, drizzle in oil, and throw in pressed garlic. Swirl around the pan to infuse the pan and oil with the garlic.
- Turn heat on to a medium to high setting and when garlic starts to sizzle, place in rags of beef, and season with salt and pepper. Stir with a pair of tongs and flip over when you see the surface start to brown. This cooking process takes about 2 minutes. Turn off heat.
- Take about 2 cups of the arugula and throw into the pan. Give it a good toss, mixing it well with the rags of beef. Season slightly with salt and pepper to taste. Take garlic out at this point.
- Squeeze some fresh lemon juice over the mixture in the pan. Drizzle some olive oil over top.
- Place the remaining arugula into a serving dish creating a bowl. Spoon beef arugula mixture into the center of the plate. Pour the pan juices over top.
- At this point you can shave some Parmigiano Reggiano over the top. This is optional, but it does add some wonderful flavor to the mix.
- Ready to serve!
Ask your butcher to slice it for you. The beef needs to be very thin. They usually freeze it a bit, then slice it with their meat slicer.
You can probably find the thin slices of beef at one of your Asian super markets, as they use it very thin in their stir fry also.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 2-3 minutes
- Category: Main, Meat
- Method: stove top
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: Beef, arugula, lemon, garlic, Parmigiano, Italian cuisine, Roman dish, inside round, straccetti, classic
I love baking and kneading dough because it takes me to a happy place in my soul.