The best ever chicken schnitzel

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This has to be one of my favourite dishes, and one my husband adores too! Chicken schnitzel is great to have all year round. Served with mash and peas, potato salad, coleslaw or even a green salad – anything you like! There are so many options! I’ve done schnitzel with my Moroccan cous cous salad and pita bread! I’d love to hear what you like with your chicken schnitzel.

Over the past few weeks, ever since I started Miss Food Fairy, I have been having our friends, especially the single males, asking me about ‘easy’ meals. So I’m going to be doing a few back ‘basics’ recipes! These are recipes that everyone should have in their repertoire and are quite easy to prepare.

I know there are a lot of schnitzel recipes out there and everyone does them differently. The difference with my schnitzel would be that I cut each chicken breast horizontally, into 3 pieces, about 5mm thick. The reason for cutting them thin, is it crisps up nicely on the outside, doesn’t take long to cook and the chicken is very tender & juicy. Tip: My sister cuts her chicken just in half horizontally and it’s still very tender and juicy. Up to you how you like to cut them. I just find keeping them thick or as a whole chicken breast takes longer to cook and there could be the possibility of drying out too much.

When I was watching MasterChef Australia about 2 years ago, Gary Mehigan added a special ingredient to his schnitzel (see the ingredients.) This took my schnitzel to a whole new level – my husband can’t get enough! His face lights up whenever I mention ‘chicken schnitzel’!

Homemade breadcrumbs are so very easy to do. Store bought are absolutely fine, but if you have 3 day old bread, don’t throw it away! Keep it! I have been using my own breadcrumbs for a while now so I’ll share with you as to just how easy it is. Heat your oven to 200°C and bake the slices of bread for 15 minutes or until golden and dried out. Once cooled, I blitz them using my stick blender (or you can put them in your food processor or blender) until you have fine breadcrumbs. And there you have it –  homemade breadcrumbs! The use of Panko breadcrumbs just adds some extra crunch. These are totally optional and can generally be found in any supermarket or grocery store or any Asian grocer sells them.

I also found the best dry Parmesan (pasta topping it’s called) to use is the one you find in the pasta aisle, not the Parmesan in the fridge section and definitely not freshly grated Parmesan! When using fresh Parmesan, it tends to make the breadcrumbs stick to the bottom of the pan, therefore coming away from the chicken! So use the dried Parmesan, it works the best – I’ve tried all Parmesans and this is just perfect!.

INGREDIENTS:
1 cup breadcrumbs
¼ cup Panko breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon Pantalica pasta topping
2 eggs, lightly whisked
2 chicken breasts, sliced horizontally into 3
1 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon butter

METHOD:
In a bowl, mix the two breadcrumbs, thyme and Parmesan together.

In another bowl, whisk the egg. Dip one piece of chicken in the egg mixture then coat with breadcrumbs, pressing firmly to coat. Set aside on a plate and repeat with the remaining chicken and mixtures.

Using either an electric fry pan (temperature 6) or a large skillet on medium heat, add the oil until it’s hot. Add 2 tablespoons butter and cook chicken in batches, for 2-3 minutes each side or until golden and crispy, adding 1 teaspoon of butter half way through cooking. Remove and place on a paper towel-lined plate.

Place chicken schnitzel pieces on dinner plates and serve with mash & peas.

Enjoy this delicious meal. Hope you make it a family tradition too – let me know your thoughts. Would love to hear from you . . .

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