With a busy schedule and a pair of broken glasses, sitting at the computer typing has not been on my to do list. But now I am sporting a pair of new rims and a have a break in the schedule. So rewind to last Sunday's dinner menu as I am sharing the main event.
Wiener Schnitzel is the traditional dish of Vienna. Cutlets of veal are pounded thin, breaded, and fried until wrinkled, puffed, and golden brown. However, I prefer the German take on this classic and therefore use pork instead of the veal. I use a boneless rack of pork rather than the tenderloin because I like a little of the tender dark meat along with the white meat on my plate. A simple garnish of parsley, capers, finely chopped egg, and a squeeze from a lemon wedge round out the flavor palate of the dish. Leftovers make for one heck of a sandwich. Ask someone from the Hawkeye State!
Pork Wiener Schnitzel
14 large slices quality sourdough bread, crusts removed and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
4 extra large eggs
2 cups plus 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
2 1/2 pounds boneless rack of pork, trimmed of fat and cut into 1/2-inch thick slices
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 lemon, cut into wedges
4 Tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/4 cup capers, rinsed
2 hard-boiled eggs, finely minced
Working in two batches, place the bread cubes on a large microwave plate. Microwave on high for 4 minutes, stirring half-way through cooking. Microwave on medium power until bread is dry and a few pieces start to brown slightly, about 3-5 minutes longer, stirring every minute. Allow the bread cubes to cool slightly. Transfer to a food processor and process to very fine crumbs, about 45 seconds. Transfer crumbs to a shallow dish (you should have about 2 1/2 cups total). Place flour in a second shallow dish. Beat eggs with the 2 tablespoons of oil in a third shallow dish.
One at a time, place pork between two sheets of plastic wrap or parchment and pound to an even thickness between 1/8- and 1/4-inch. Season both sides of each cutlet with salt and pepper. Working with one cutlet at a time, dredge cutlets thoroughly through flour, shaking off excess, then coat with egg mixture allowing excess to drip back into dish to ensure a very thin coating. Then coat evenly with bread crumbs, pressing to adhere. Place breaded cutlets in a single layer on a wire rack set over a baking sheet. Allow coating to dry for 5 minutes.
Heat remaining 2 cups of oil in a large Dutch oven or cast iron pot over medium-high heat until an instant thermometer reaches 375º F. Lay one cutlet at a time in the pan and cook, spooning hot oil over the top of the cutlet until the cutlets are wrinkled, puffed, and light golden on both sides, 1-2 minutes per side. Transfer cutlets to a paper towel-lined plate and flip cutlets several times to blot excess oil. Repeat with remaining cutlets. Serve immediately with lemon wedges and accompaniments if using. Enjoy!
Source: Adapted from Cook's Illustrated, January 2009