Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Morcon By Memory

For a vegetarian, it's unnatural to be cooking meat dishes but this is for all
the carnivores I live with!
After cooking mechado a few weeks ago, I turned my attention to another one of my father's favorite dishes -- morcon. Although he cooked it only for special occasions like holidays and birthdays, it's a relatively easy dish to prepare.
As with my father's mechado, I have no recipe to follow, I cooked this dish from my memory!

Morcon is actually a version of beef roulade or rolled beef, a dish which you can find in many other countries.
It starts with a good sized cut of beef -- butterfly cut. You can use tapadera (sirloin), kalitiran (blade steak) or camto (flank steak). I buy my morcon meat at Cash and Carry where the butcher does a very good butterfly cut -- the meat is evenly sliced with hardly any cuts or tears at all. This is perfect as the stuffing is kept inside the meat and does not spill out while it is being cooked.
Once you have your beef thawed out, marinate it for at least an hour in some soy sauce and calamansi.

For the stuffing slice chorizos, hard boiled eggs, whole sweet pickles and hotdogs. I also add cheddar cheese strips which melt and add that extra creaminess to each bite. For the sauce, canned whole tomatoes are better than fresh.

Arrange the strips of chorizo, egg, hotdog, pickles and cheese and slowly roll up the beef as you go along.

I use food grade cotton twine to tie up each morcon roll. My husband Jay takes over for this task as he makes very neat knots!

Saute garlic, onions in olive oil and butter (yes, butter). Then add shin and knee bones with a bit of meat for that added beefiness and flavor. Once the bones and meat are lightly browned, put in the morcon rolls and let it cook a bit before adding the canned whole tomatoes and the beef broth.

And after four hours of a slow and steady simmer, here is my morcon, -- for a cut of beef that was slightly less than 2 kilos, I was able to make 3 good sized rolls!
Morcon may be a holiday dish but since it's so easy to make, you can enjoy it more often!

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