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Rouladen (or Rinderroulade, singular: roulade) is a German meat roulade usually consisting of bacon, onions, mustard and pickles wrapped in thinly sliced beef which is then cooked. In some countries, the roulade is also known as "beef olive".
Beef or veal is used as meat though some food scholars tend to believe that the original version was probably venison or pork, and pork is still popular in some areas. The beef rouladen as we know them today have become popular over the last century. The cut is usually topside beef or silverside since this is the cheaper cut. The more expensive version would be the round steak, also known as rump steak. The meat is cut into large, thin slices.
The filling is a mixture of smoked and cooked pork belly, chopped onions and chopped pickles (gurken) which is at times varied by adding minced meat, sausage meat, pine nuts and mustard. The mixture varies from region to region. Rouladen are traditionally served for dinner. Red wine is often served with this dish.
How it is eaten
Rouladen are usually served with either spätzle, potato dumplings or boiled potatoes and red cabbage. Roasted winter vegetables are another common side dish. The gravy is an absolute requirement to round off the dish and is usually poured over the meat. The spätzle are a good complement to the dish since they soak up the gravy well.
This dish was considered a dish for common people; however, it is nowadays enjoyed by many as a festive dish.