Classic Wienerschnitzel

1a - plated dish.jpg

Wienerschnitzel is the iconic dish of Vienna.

B loin touch new.jpg

Officially, Wienerschnitzel is made with Veal, but I prefer making it with Pork; it’s less expensive and better still tastier.

You can buy boneless Pork Loin Cutlets from the supermarket, or you can have the butcher prepare it, or you can buy a piece of pork top round and cut and pound it yourself. If you can’t get a top round use a pork loin instead.

3a - flap.jpg
B silver skin.jpg

With a top pork round remove the top flap using a knife or by simply using your thumb to separate. This flap tends to separate with a minimum of effort.

Remove the fatty parts and silver skin from the outside of the loin.

4a meat slicing.jpg

Cut the meat into approximately 6 oz pieces. Weigh the whole piece and divide by 6 oz. which will give you an idea of how many Schnitzels you can get out of it. One typical pork typical round loin from the supermarket or butcher should yield approximately 6 – 8 portions.

B plastic wrap.jpg

Place plastic wrap or a ziploc bag over the cutlet before pounding, this will keep the meat clean and give you a more even result.

5a pounding.jpg
b pounding.jpg

Use the flat side of meat pounder (tenderizer). Visualize a line through the center of the meat, flatten the top half pounding away from you and the bottom half pounding toward you. While pounding be careful not to break the meat.

You want it not too thick but not too thin (otherwise known as the “Goldilocks Zone”). If you don't have a meat tenderizer you can use a heavy pan or skillet in a pinch (good luck!).

6b pepper.jpg

Season the meat with salt and pepper.

7a oil.jpg

Before breading the pork, heat up a neutral oil with a high smoke point (like Canola or Peanut oil) in a large pan, preferably 12-15 inches.  Fill it with 1.5 – 2 inches of oil so the schnitzel can swim in it, this will avoid the Schnitzel from touching the bottom of the pan so that the Schnitzel can fry gently without charring. Make sure there is enough room in the pan so that the oil does not overflow.

8a flour.jpg
8b - egg.jpg
8c - breadcrums.jpg

Prepare 3 separate baking pans, one with flour, one with eggs, and one with breadcrumbs*. Season the egg mixture with salt and pepper.

  1. Coat with flour

  2. Continue by coating with egg mixture

  3. Finish by coating with breadcrumbs tightly with some pressure.

*You don't need to buy fancy bread crumbs, just buy the plain ones (but not flavored). Do not use Panko. After breading don't let the schnitzel sit around too long or the breading will get soggy.

9a spoon bubble.jpg
b crumbs.jpg

Check to see if the oil is hot enough. Do this by using a kitchen thermometer. Or simply either use the end of a wooden spoon or sprinkle a few bread crumbs and watch for bubbles, when you see them the oil is hot enough.

10a placing.jpg
11a frying.jpg

Slowly and carefully place schnitzel into the oil.  Always start by placing it away from you to avoid any hot oil splashing onto you.

The Schnitzel should be swimming in the oil, you should be hearing a vibrant bubbling sound. If not this recipe won't work.

b brown 2.jpg
b brown 1.jpg

When it starts to get brown on the sides flip over the Schnitzel and start to shake the pan carefully to get air underneath. This will separate bread crumbs from the meat. ***This is what's known as the Soufflé Effect which is the key to a great, classic Wienerschnitzel***

ba butter1.jpg

 Add butter to the pan. There is some water content in the butter which will go under the Schnitzel increasing the Soufflé Effect.

It only takes about 2 to 3 minutes to get the perfect Wienerschnitzel.

13a paper towel.jpg

After the Schnitzel is golden brown on both sides take it out of the pan, place onto a paper towel or better yet onto a baking rack to drain. Don't let it sit too long.

This recipe is for 3 - 4 people, serve it as a soon as possible. Don't make this for a larger group or the Wienerschnitzels will get soggy.

14a final plate.jpg

Traditionally this iconic dish is served with Parsley Potatoes, a wedge of Lemon, some Lingonberry jam and a sprig of parsley. If you can't find Lingonberry jam substitute with cranberry or red currant jam. (add another picture of finshed Schnitzel, perhaps with Erwin in frame, looking into camera)

Viola, classic Wienerschnitzel, it's a treat. Enjoy!

b ending.jpg
Erwin CooksComment