Wiener Schnitzel (Breaded Veal Cutlets)
Wiener Schnitzel is an old German recipe that is popular with the Pennsylvania Dutch. In my family, it was just called "breaded veal cutlets". Wiener Schnitzel is traditionally served with a fried egg. However, my mother usually prepared a light gravy from the pan drippings and omitted the egg. Either way, it is a quick, easy and delicious main dish. If veal is not your thing, the recipe can be made with boneless, skinless chicken breasts or pork loin. Pound them thin as stated below and follow the recipe.
- 4 veal cutlets, about 6-ounces each
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 egg, beaten with 1 teaspoon water
- 1/4 cup dry bread crumbs
- Juice of 1 small lemon
- Oil for frying
- 4 large eggs
Pound veal to about 1/4-inch thick. Pat dry. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place flour and bread crumbs on individual plates or waxed paper. Dip the cutlets first into the flour, then the beaten egg and finally, the bread crumbs. Place on baking rack and set in refrigerator for 15 to 30 minutes. This will help the coating adhere when frying.
Pour enough oil into a large heavy skillet to come about 1/4-inch up the sides. Heat over medium-high. When oil is hot, add veal cutlets, in batches of two if necessary so as not to crowd the pan. Fry until golden brown, about 4 minutes per side, turning once. Place on a cooling rack set over a sheet pan and keep warm.
Drain all but a thin coating of oil from pan. Reheat pan and fry eggs to desired doneness. Drizzle each veal cutlet with a little lemon juice. Place one fried egg on top of each and serve immediately.
Notes: If you are using chicken or pork, which are usually thicker than veal cutlets, you might need to butterfly them before pounding. Halve them horizontally, starting at one long side and cutting almost but not completely through to the other side. Open like a book and then pound them out.