Citrus Flavored Meat Rolls

Aromatic bay leaves and tart citrus combine to make this easy main dish seem more complex than it is, and its ingredients are at home from Umbria to Sicily.


  • 10 very thin slices of pork loin or chicken breast
  • ½ cup dry breadcrumbs (not too fine)
  • Juice of 1 orange (preferably “tarocco”)
  • 1 Tb. fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 TB. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 TB. (20 grams) pine nuts
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 oz. of mild cheese, diced
  • 5 fresh bay leaves
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Plain breadcrumbs (about 1/2 cup)


Preheat oven to 400° F (200°C)

Mix the orange juice, parsley, oil, pine nuts, lemon zest, salt, and pepper, then add enough bread crumbs (approx. ½ cup) to make a soft, non-pasty consistency. Mix in the cheese.

Lay a piece of meat on a cutting board, place a mound of filling in the center, and roll the meat so the filling is tucked inside. Dip the meat roll in oil, then roll in breadcrumbs, and place in an oiled ovenproof dish. Do this with all the meat rolls, placing a bay leave between them, and drizzle with olive oil.

Bake for 18-20 minutes.  These can also be placed on skewers and grilled–be careful that the grill is not too hot so that crumbs burn. You can also try cooking them over the stove on a flat iron grill over a medium flame.  Serves 4-6. Buon appetito!