Saltimbocca (literally “jumps in the mouth”) is one of the typical dishes of the region of Rome. It is now a worldwide known dish, perhaps most known abroad with spaghetti. In fact, the origin of saltimbocca alla romana is controversial: despite their name, some believe that they were prepared for the first time in the city of Brescia, in Lombardy.
Whatever their true story, it is certain that the Italian writer Pellegrino Artusi, who described the saltimbocca alla romana in the late nineteenth, tasted the first Roman restaurant “Le Venete”. Later, other traditional restaurants in the capital have added to their menus.
Ingredients for 4 people
- Butter – 50 g
- Veal – 8 cutlets 70-80 g each
- Ham – 8 slices
- Sage – 8 sheets
- White wine – 200 ml dry
- Black pepper
Preparing saltimbocca alla romana
Prepare the meat, removing fat and nerves. If you wish, you can round the edges by cutting knife. Then cover the baking paper cutlets and beat them to tenderize the meat. Finally put on each veal cutlet a slice of ham and a sage leaf, and secure it with a toothpick.
If you do not have a skillet large enough to hold all the saltimbocca, cook them twice. Melt half the butter in the pan, when it crackles, add four saltimbocca. Let them brown for a few minutes. Then add the white wine and let it evaporate. Once cooked meat, salt and pepper and set aside warm with the pan juices. Do the same for the last 4 saltimbocca, water them with their cooking juices and serve.
According to tradition, the saltimbocca alla romana are served with vegetables, such as potatoes, the peas, carrots, etc. Over time, this recipe has experienced several variants. Veal cutlets can be floured before cooking, to better absorb the condiment. Some wind saltimbocca before cooking them, others prefer to replace butter with olive oil.