Sunday, 2 September 2012

Snitel Parizian

“Parisian schnitzel”

I’m not sure when the Romanians started eating schnitzel, but I would imagine that it passed overland by way of the Austro-Hungarian empire into Transylvania and gainrd popularity there. Or maybe the chefs of the more popular Bucharest restaurants recreated it for German and Austrian visitors during the early half of the last century. I have no idea to be honest and some searching on the ‘net threw up no answers. However it arrived here, it is now pretty much a staple of Romanian restaurants across the country and so here I present another version (I made a chicken schnitzel in an earlier blog post) which is cooked in a slightly different way, using a flour and egg batter rather than being dredged in breadcrumbs, a style more commonly associated with the Vienna Schnitzel (snitel vienez).

Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 2 schnitzels

2 veal cutlets about 15-20mm thick
2 eggs
4 tablespoons of flour
100ml of milk*
Salt and pepper
Oil for frying (can be a mixture of oil and butter for a richer flavour)
Lemon and parsley for garnish

*I’ve seen all sorts of recipes. Some use milk, some use sour cream, some use beer, some just use less flour and nothing else. You decide.

1. Beat the eggs well and add the flour spoonful by spoonful and mix into a paste. Add the liquid (milk, cream, bread) gradually, beating constantly, until you get a batter consistency which should resemble cream. It should still be liquid but sticky enough to coat the back of a spoon.
2. Season the cutlets with salt and pepper and then, using a meat beater of some description, bash the cutlets until they are about 3mm thick and have doubled in surface area.
3. Pour about 5mm of oil (and butter if using) in a large frying pan and set on a medium-high heat. When it is up to heat, dip the cutlets into the batter, making sure they are well coated, and lay the battered cutlets in the oil (being careful not to splash oil on yourself, of course) and cook, turning once, until golden brown on both sides. The trick here is to get the temperature of the oil just right: not so hot as to burn the batter whilst leaving the meat raw, but not so cool as to make the batter soggy by the time the meat has cooked.
4. When done, remove to a plate covered with kitchen paper and leave to drain for a minute before serving.

Delicious served with potatoes of any variety (mashed, fried, sautéed, new potatoes), with a sprinkle of chopped fresh parsley, a slice of lemon, and a small bowl of ‘mujdei’ (a kind of garlic puree often served in Romania with grilled or fried meat dishes).

No comments: