The first time I traveled to the land of my Austrian ancestors I was taken to a restaurant where I saw "schnitzel" on the menu.
Of course, I ordered it, thinking I could use a good German sausage in a bun. (You have my permission to pound your head on the wall now.)
I mean, who in America didn't grow up with those fast food joints with the giant hot dogs on the top of them? That was schnitzel, right?
When the order came, I was stunned by how far off it was from what I was expecting; even my gracious hosts had a hard time believing me when I told them that in America, a wiener schnitzel was a hot dog (at least where I was from in suburban California).
Pork Schnitzel or "Cutlet"
Curses! Yes, we tend to distort some traditional dishes here in America, but this one? We weren't even close.
"Schnitzel", for the uninitiated, is German for "cutlet" which is usually made with veal and thinly pounded, breaded and fried.
As for this schnitzel recipe, it is made with thinly pounded pork cutlets. Those of you looking for a quick, mid-week dinner may be happy with this one. I love it.
The sauce alone is worth making this pork schnitzel for, and could easily be used on chicken, for turkey meatballs, or over fish.
How to Make Schnitzel That Shines
To ensure your schnitzel turns out well, follow these tips.
- For less pounding, start out with thin cutlets, no more than 1/2 inch thick.
- Pat the cutlets dry with a paper towel. The flour will stick to dry cutlets better.
- If you're concerned about the breading staying on the cutlets, bread them an hour before cooking. Put them in a single layer, uncovered, on a tray in the refrigerator; the breading will adhere better. The cooking time may increase a minute or two for cutlets straight out of the refrigerator.
- If you're cooking the cutlets in batches, place a metal rack on a baking sheet, and keep the cooked cutlets in a preheated 180°F oven on the rack. Placing the cutlets directly on the baking sheet may result soggy breading.
The Best Cuts of Meat for This Schnitzel Recipe
While this recipe calls for pork chops, you can substitute other meats.
- Veal cutlets
- Chicken cutlets
- Turkey cutlets
- Round steak
What Are Some Other Sauces for Schnitzel?
The dill sauce complements the schnitzel well, but don't feel limited. Try one of these other pan sauces:
Can Schnitzel Be Made in Advance?
Schnitzel is a dish best served immediately, but if you must, you can sauté the breaded cutlets ahead of time. Cool on a baking rack, then cover and refrigerate. Reheat the breaded cutlets in the oven at 350°F until just warmed through.
The sauce can't be made fully in advance because the sour cream will curdle when you reheat it. But you can start the sauce ahead of time. Deglaze the skillet with chicken stock after cooking the cutlets as described in Step 5. Cool, then cover and refrigerate. When it's to time serve, as the cutlets are reheating in the oven, bring the reduced stock to a boil, lower to a simmer, and then finish by adding the dill, sour cream, and seasonings to taste.
What to Serve with Pork Schnitzel
- Sweet and Sour German Red Cabbage
- Sauerkraut With Bacon and Apples
- German Potato Salad
- Perfect Mashed Potatoes
- Pickled Red Onions
4 boneless pork chops (1 pound total), 1/2 inch thick
1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon seasoned salt (Spike or Lawrey's, or just substitute plain salt)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 egg, beaten
2 tablespoons milk
3/4 cup fine dry breadcrumbs or panko
1 teaspoon paprika
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or canola oil
3/4 cup chicken stock
1/2 teaspoon dried dill or 2 teaspoons chopped fresh dill
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sour cream (full fat)
Use a meat hammer to pound the pork cutlets:
Pound the cutlets to 1/4-1/8 inch thickness. Cut small slits around the edges of the cutlets to prevent curling.
Set up a breading station:
Place flour, seasoned salt, and pepper mixed together in a shallow bowl. Whisk the egg and milk together in a second shallow bowl. Combine the breadcrumbs (or panko) and paprika in a third shallow bowl.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet on medium high heat. Dredge the cutlets first in the seasoned flour, then dip the cutlets in the egg mixture, and then dip them into the mixture of bread crumbs and paprika, turning them over to get the bread crumbs on all sides.
Working in batches, sauté the cutlets for 3 to 4 minutes on each side:
Remove the cutlets from the skillet and cover with foil or place in a warm oven to keep warm.
Deglaze pan, make dill sauce for schnitzel:
Add the chicken stock into the skillet to deglaze the pan, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen the brown bits.
In a small bowl mix the dill and salt into the sour cream. Stir the sour cream mixture into the chicken stock.
Heat and stir until mixture thickens (do not let boil).
Serve the cutlets with the sauce, and lemon slices if you like.
|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 38g||48%|
|Saturated Fat 11g||56%|
|Total Carbohydrate 25g||9%|
|Dietary Fiber 1g||5%|
|Total Sugars 3g|
|Vitamin C 1mg||3%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|