Lübeck swallow nests

The Lübeck swallow’s nests are not a Far Eastern but a North German speciality. A veal or turkey cutlet is sautéed with ham and boiled egg rolled into a roulade and cooked in a skillet. Seasoning is only salt and pepper.

Sliced cold, this stuffed roulade is great for cannapes, finger foods and brunch. This speciality is named after the North German Hanseatic city of Lübeck in Schleswig-Holstein.

Rouade of meat and a boiled egg as a hot main course.

Recipe Luebeck swallow nests

Simple, but delicious. Warm as a main course or cold as a snack.
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Course: main dish, snack food
Cuisine: Northern Germany
Keyword: savoury
Difficulty: Experienced
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients & Shopping list

  • 4 calves- or turkey escalopes
  • 4 hard boiled eggs (peeled)
  • 4 thin slices of raw ham (aromatic like Black Forest or Serrano)
  • some flour
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 250 ml hot water
  • salt, pepper
  • starch flour


  • Beat the cutlets. To do this, it is best to put them in a freezer bag beforehand. This way everything stays clean. Then lightly salt and pepper.
  • Now place the ham and then the hard-boiled eggs on the cutlets. Form everything into a roll and fix it with wooden toothpicks. Roll all the rolls in flour and then pat well. So far, that everything is only lightly floured. 
  • Melt the fat in a pan and fry the rolls on all sides until golden brown. Deglaze with 1/4 l hot water. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 30 minutes. Turn the rolls several times.
  • Then remove the roulades and keep warm. Mix the starch in a little cold water. Thicken the broth with it and add pepper or salt to taste.
  • Cut the rolls in half diagonally in the middle. Well, that takes care of the swallows' nests. Arrange them on the plate, pour the sauce over them and serve with potatoes or mashed potatoes and a tender vegetable. These include peas, carrots or sugar snap peas.

Tips & Hints

TIP: To get an aromatic sauce you should use a good ham. Very good taste brings e.g. Spanish Serrano or a good Black Forest ham.

Variant as party snack

Snack Fingerfood Lübeck Swallow's Nests

Here’s how:

  • Allow the cooked roulades to cool down
  • Cut into slices.
  • Arrange on a cocktail skewer with cucumber slices, lettuce, cocktail tomatoes and physalis.
  • Or: What the refrigerator and the imagination give.
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