Polpettone con Ricotta


I have made various types of meatloaf and I have made meat rolls using flank steak (braciolone), but I have never made rolled meatloaf before now.

Polpettone con Ricotta (Stuffed Italian Meat Loaf) is a recipe I modified from an old cookbook of my mother’s, which she purchased at a church fundraiser.

The Italian Catholic Federation, (Central Coast District) was established in 1966 for the purpose of retaining Italian traditions and helping our fellow man. “Our Favorite Italian Recipes,”¬† the only cookbook (to my knowledge) that they published is a small 5-inch x 7- inch loose-leaf book.

It is held together with a bright red plastic spiral binding, that is now tattered and falling apart. The following disclosure appears on the first page: The recipes in this book may not have been laboratory tested, but their merit has been established¬† by civic and women’s groups everywhere and by the most critical group of all … Husbands!


  • 1/2 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 cup ricotta
  • 1/2 cup smoked mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced or grated
  • 2 tablespoons Italian parsley, chopped

Combine ground beef and ground pork, season with salt and pepper.



On a baking pan lined with parchment or wax paper, flatten the meat into a rectangle. Spread on the ricotta, top with mozzarella, sprinkle with parsley.




Roll the meat using the parchment paper to assist if necessary.





Remove the paper, bake in 350*oven 45-55 minutes. (Some of the filling will leak out). Let cool, slice into rounds.

For Merenda, plate a slice or two and garnish with a sprig of rosemary.



The original recipe called for mashed potatoes, I used ricotta instead and I replaced regular mozzarella with a smoked mozzarella. The original recipe also called for a can of tomato paste, olive oil and prosciutto with no directions on what to do with these ingredients. I suspect the prosciutto could have been layered on the meat prior to rolling and the tomato paste and olive oil used for making a sauce, however there was no mention of a sauce. I think the rolls are flavorful enough (with the smoked mozzarella) by themselves, but if you use wish to serve them with a marinara sauce, I would use a regular mozzarella instead of the smoked variety. Unfortunately, many of the recipes in this cookbook could have used the benefit of an editor.

Pasta alla Norma