Being a Kitchener native, I can’t help but get into the Oktoberfest spirit at this time of year.
It’s a time where we get to raise our steins and partake in some Bavarian tradition, including a cold beer and some delicious German fare. Schnitzel is certainly a favorite of mine which is simple to prepare and tastes great by itself, with sauce or even wedged between your favorite bread.
Schnitzel is a breaded cutlet dish made with boneless meat thinned with a meat mallet, coated in bread crumbs and fried. It is a popular food in many countries and is made from veal, chicken, beef, turkey or pork. I like to use chicken breast or pork tenderloin.
I usually wedge the meat between two pieces of plastic wrap and pound with a rolling pin or back the back of a frying pan. No need to waste your hard-earned cash on a mallet if you don’t already have one kicking around. Seasoning my panko (Japanese bread crumbs) varies but generally I like to keep it simple with salt, pepper a pinch of garlic powder and onion powder. Remember, cooking is all about trying new things so feel free to add different spices if you’d like be adventurous like smoked paprika or some dried herbs.
I serve this dish with hunter’s sauce (mushroom sauce), Spaetzle and a small side salad or some basic sautéed veggies. The next day I like to put some Wellesley apple butter, cheddar cheese and the leftover schnitzel on some crusty baguette.
If you haven’t been to the Kitchener-Waterloo Oktoberfest celebration, it’s an absolute must at least once in your lifetime. But watch out – once you get a taste of German traditional food, polka music and the cheer that comes along with it you will be guaranteed to want to visit the fest year after year. Bring the kids, meet Onkle Hans, do the chicken dance and enjoy a cold beer and some great food. You may even end up learning some German phrases like ”Ziggy Zaggy, Ziggy Zaggy, Oi, Oi, Oi!” or “Prost!.”
- 4 pieces of your favorite meat, bashed between two sheets of grease proof paper or plastic wrap until very thin
- Flour, seasoned with salt, pepper a pinch of garlic powder and onion powder
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup milk
- 2 cups fine, dry breadcrumbs or panko
- 4 tbsp butter
- 4 lemon slices
Breading station: Grab three bowls. In one, add flour, the second add egg mixture and in the third bowl add bread crumbs;
Heat the butter to moderately high in a large frying pan;
Lightly coat each escalope in the flour, then the egg and finally the breadcrumbs – press down to coat the meat well;
Fry the meat until it is golden brown on both sides (it’s quick due to the thinness of the meat);
Serve, garnished with lemon or sauce.
German Spaetzle Dumplings
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup milk
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 gallon hot water
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Mix together flour, and salt. Beat eggs well, and add alternately with the milk to the dry ingredients. Mix until smooth;
Press dough through spaetzle maker, or a colander or a squeeze bottle;
Drop a few at a time into simmering liquid. Cook 5 to 8 minutes. Drain well;
Saute cooked spaetzle in butter or margarine. Sprinkle chopped fresh parsley on top, and serve.