Friday, September 21, 2012

Pork Schnitzel (Take #2)

This isn't our first pork schnitzel (although it might be the first one that we made that looks like fish sticks - how did that happen?!).  And I'm sure that it won't be my last because I have a thing for schnitzel, be it chicken or pork.  But this schnitzel is a little more traditional than our last attempt at schnitzel (recipe available here) - there was no Parmigiano-Reggiano or cornmeal anywhere.  With the exception of panko bread crumbs, we tried to stay pretty classic here and it worked very well.  The only thing that would have made this schnitzel better is if we had made a riff on the ginger scallion and garlic relish from the Schnizel & Things truck because that sauce is absolutely awesome.  Some sort of a sauce (in addition to the mustard and lemon or in lieu of the mustard and lemon) would have been awesome.  I know that a sour cream-based sauce is more traditional, but that was taking things a little too far.  And we didn't have any sour cream so it would have required another trip to the grocery store.  No dice.  But even without a sauce, the pork was very nicely seasoned and perfectly cooked.  It was tender and almost juicy.  And unlike the last time, it was nicely porky.  You could actually taste that it was pork.  I'm not sure if it was the different cut of meat or the quality of the meat, but I really appreciated that you weren't biting into mystery meat because no one likes mystery meat.

Recipe after the jump!

Pork Schnitzel (Take #2)

4 boneless center cut pork chops cutlets, 1/2 inch thick
1/2 cup flour
1 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 egg, beaten
2 tbsp milk
3/4 cup panko
1 tsp sweet smoked paprika (but regular paprika would work too)
3 tbsp canola oil
coarse mustard (I would recommend spicy mustard, but regular coarse mustard would work too - we used Jalapeno IPA Mustard from My Friends Mustard)
lemon wedges

Place a pork cutlet on a cutting board between two pieces of saran wrap or wax paper.  Gently pound the pork cutlet to 1/4-1/8 inch thickness using a meat mallet.  Repeat with remaining cutlets.

Create a breading station using shallow pans or bowls.  The first shallow pan should have the flour, s&p and garlic powder.  Stir to combine.  The second shallow pan should have the lightly beaten egg, mixed with the milk.  The last shallow pan should have the panko breadcrumbs and paprika.  Dip each pork cutlet into the flour mixture, then the egg, and then the panko breadcrumb mixture.  Be sure to shake off excess flour and egg before proceeding onto the next step.  Coat both sides of the pork cutlets in panko breadcrumbs, patting to make sure panko adheres if necessary.

Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet on moderately high heat.  Saute the cutlets for 2-3 minutes on each side.  You will probably have to do two at a time.  Remove the cutlets from the skillet as they are finished and set aside on a plate covered with foil.  Repeat with the remaining pork. 

Serve with mustard and lemon wedges.

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