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Pork Schnitzel

Pork Schnitzel

Schnitzel, German for “cutlet,” is a traditional Austrian dish consisting of a thin slice of meat coated in breadcrumbs and fried. It is a popular part of Viennese and Austrian cuisine. Although the traditional wiener schnitzel is made of veal, it is now sometimes made with pork. However, in Austria, the term “wiener schnitzel” is protected by law, and any schnitzel called by that name has to be made from veal.

This recipe, which in Austria is called “wiener schnitzel vom schwein” to differentiate it from the veal dish, is made with thinly-pounded pork cutlets. Those of you looking for a quick, mid-week dinner will like this one. The sauce alone is worth making the recipe for, and could easily be used on chicken or over fish, especially salmon.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

4 boneless pork chops, 1/2-inch thick (1 pound total)
1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon seasoned salt (or plain salt)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 egg, beaten
2 tablespoons milk
3/4 cup fine dry bread crumbs or panko
1 teaspoon paprika
3 tablespoons olive 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)

Preparation:

Use a meat hammer or empty wine bottle to pound the pork cutlets to a thickness of 1/8-inch to 1/4-inch. Cut small slits around the edges of the cutlets to prevent curling

Set out 3 shallow bowls. In one, put the mixture of the flour, seasoned salt, and pepper. In another, the egg and milk whisked together. In the third put the mixture of the bread crumbs (or panko) and paprika.

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 into the mixture of bread crumbs and paprika.

Working in batches, sauté the cutlets for 2 minutes on each side or until nicely browned. Remove the cutlets from the skillet and cover with foil or place in a warm oven to keep warm.

Add the chicken stock into the skillet to deglaze the pan, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen the brown bits. Simmer to reduce by a third. 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 the mixture thickens, taking care to not let it boil. Serve the cutlets with the sauce, and garnish with lemon slices if you like.

Note: For pounding I put chops on wax paper or stretch wrap and place a small plastic bag over pounder. Makes for easy clean up.

I wanted my sauce a little thicker, so before adding sour cream I mixed 1 tablespoon potato starch with a little white wine and stirred into the chicken stock. You also can use the seasoned flour for this.

For thickening sauces, I use potato starch which I store in the freezer. It has a higher heat point than arrowroot or cornstarch so it doesn't break down when simmering. It also helps the sauces remain translucent, whereas flour creates a more muddied appearing sauce.