Lunchbreak: Pizza Barra chef Chris Macchia makes braciole with soft polenta

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Chris Macchia

Pizza Barra

3011 Butterfield Rd. - Oak Brook, IL

Braciole with Soft Polenta


4lbs beef chuck roll
2 cloves garlic, divided
2 sprigs of rosemary
salt and pepper to taste
6 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
2 onions (diced small)
4 carrots (diced small)
6 stalks of celery (diced small)
2 bay leaves
1 cup of salsa verde or basil pesto
2 cups dry red wine
2 cups chicken stock
2 cups tomato sauce
zest of one orange

Butterfly meat and place beef between two pieces of plastic wrap. Gently pound to 1/4 to 1/8-inch thickness. Rub with salt and pepper as well as the salsa verde or basil pesto. Tie closed and let sit overnight. Brown in extra virgin olive oil. Once browned, cook vegetables and aromatics. When vegetables are soft, add meat back to pan. Cover with wine, chicken stock, and tomato sauce. Simmer for 2 hours and served warm with soft polenta and grated parmesan.


6 cups water
2 Tbs salt
2 cups cornmeal
3 Tbs butter

Mix ingredients together. Bring to boil. Once boiled, place mixture in pan. Set aside to reduce heat. Sprinkle with parmesan and serve warm.