Food Gold: Schnitzel or Milanese?

Posted on Dec 8th, 2010 in Food Gold by Elliot Aronow

Last weekend, I had a wild craving for a BK Chicken Sandwich, which for the record was my most favorite childhood food. Rather than forking over three bucks for a chemically processed corporate death machine fillet, I decided to whip up a batch of chicken schnitzel, aka chicken Milanese. Or in Jersey Shore parlance, “chicken cutlets.” To be fair these are not synonymous but rather “related” dishes. All three consist of breaded and fried chicken but the Milanese usually has parmesan in the mix while schnitzels are traditionally made with veal.

In learning how to make this you master not only the art of properly cooking chicken breasts so they are juicy and delectable but also how to properly heat oil and cook in batches to ensure crispy, golden brown food. Important stuff to say the least. And just remember tonight’s chicken cutlet night can also be tomorrow’s chicken parmesan night!

Ingredients:

- 1 lb boneless/skinless chicken breasts, butterflied and cut in half. This makes approx 3 servings. Each person would get two pieces.

- 1 egg

- 1 plate full of panko or regular breadcrumbs

- Dash of paprika (optional)

- Dash of red pepper (optional)

- Salt/Pepper

- Enough Vegetable Oil to coat entire pan

Equipment:

Meat Mallet

Large Skillet

1. Butterfly chicken breasts and cut them in half. Pound them very thin using a meat mallet or heavy skillet or copy of the Power Broker. Then season both sides with a good amount of salt. You may have to re-pound them again if they contract before you bread them.

2. Beat an egg and place it in a shallow bowl. Then set up a plate right next to it that is covered in delicious breadcrumbs. Add some paprika or red pepper if you want.

3. Coat your entire skillet with a layer of vegetable oil and heat over medium/high heat for at least 3 minutes. Throw in a bread crumb and see if it sizzles and bubbles form. If so, your oil is hot enough.

4. Re-pound chicken breasts if necessary and if not, dip them in the egg and then in the breadcrumbs. Keep one hand for dry stuff and one for wet/raw chicken stuff. Cover breast with breadcrumbs and shake off excess.

5. Toss in breasts two at a time (you will need to do multiple additions otherwise the pan temperature will be too low and you will get soggy schnitzels) and cook for approx 90 seconds on first side and 1 minute on second side. As always, cook with your eyes and nose and remove from pan once breasts are golden brown and look amazing.

6. Saute in batches. Remove any fucked up/burnt breadcrumbs from skillet and add and heat up more oil as necessary. Maybe hit them with a splash of fresh squeezed lemon at the end.

That’s it! Enjoy!

Fork The World,

Elliot

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