I highly recommend this recipe for a tasty weeknight meal. This take on schnitzel* is not only very tasty, it is also healthier than the traditional version. I love eating it with stewed zucchini and tomatoes. The soft texture and juice of the stewed vegetables beautifully complement the ‘crunch’ of the schnitzel.
Chicken Schnitzel Recipe
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
- 2 chicken breasts
- 50 gr of bread crumbs
- 2 tsp of dried thyme
- 1 tsp of cumin
- 1/4 tsp of hot paprika
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 egg white
- 2 tbsp of olive oil
- 1 lemon
Mediterranean Vegetable Stew Recipe
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 35 minutes
- 2 small, firm zucchini
- 2 tomatoes
- 1 onion
- 1 tsp of dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp of dried rosemary
- 1/4 tsp of chilli flakes
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 80 ml water
Step 1 – Prepare the vegetables: Dice the onion. Cut the tomatoes into eighths. Slice the zucchini as per the picture. For better presentation you might want to peel the tomatoes* as well. I do not peel tomatoes for casual meals because of the high level of nutrient contained in tomato skin.
Step 2 – Stew the vegetables: Pour 1 tbsp of olive oil in a heavy bottom, mid-size sauce pan. Bring to medium heat and cook the diced onion for 5 minutes or until translucent. Add the finely chopped garlic and cook for another minute. Then add tomatoes and zucchini as well as 1 tsp of thyme, 1/2 tsp of rosemary and 1/4 tsp of chilli flakes. Pour 80 ml of water onto the vegetables and bring to a boil.
Reduce to medium heat and cook for about 25 minutes. Stir regularly, but very gently, to make sure it is not sticking to the bottom of the pan. By the end of the cooking time, only a little bit of juice should remain.
Step 3 – Prepare the crumb mix: In a small bowl, mix 50 grams of bread crumbs with 2 tsp of dried thyme, 1 tsp of cumin and 1/4 tsp of hot paprika. Add salt and pepper to taste. Then, add 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped. With your fingers, massage the bread crumb mixture so as to extract the juices of the garlic. Set aside.
Step 4 – Slice the chicken breasts: On a chopping board, slice the chicken breasts horizontally in about 3 pieces depending on the size of the breasts. Although sometimes difficult, it is important that all pieces are of equal thickness to ensure even cooking.
Step 5 – Crumb the schnitzels: Crack an egg open and reserve the white. Using a kitchen brush, spread the egg white all over the chicken. Then, using your hands, roll the schnitzels into the bread crumb mix. Shake off any excess.
Step 6 – Cook the schnitzels: Heat 1.5 tbsp of olive oil in a large non-stick frypan. Once very hot, place the schnitzels in the fypan and cook for 4 to 5 minutes. Then turn the schnitzels, drizzle another 1/2 tbsp of olive oil around them and cook, still on high heat, for another 3 minutes or until golden. Take off the heat. The trick here is to obtain a nice golden crust while not overcooking the chicken.
Step 7 – Serve: Serve the schnitzels with a couple of spoons of vegetable stew. Drizzle lemon juice over the schnitzels and serve immediately.
Mix & Match
If you do not like your food too spicy, you could replace the hot paprika /chilli powder by sweet paprika. You could also add capsicum and /or eggplant to the vegetable stew. For a more substantial meal (or if you have hungry guests!), I suggest a side of rosemary-flavoured roasted potatoes.
Both red and white wines work equally well with this meal. For reds, I recommend a Pinot Noir or a Shiraz. For white, I would go for a Sauvignon Blanc.
*Did you Know?
- Schnitzels originated in Austria. Originally made of veal, there are now often made of pork. Chicken schnitzel is more popular than its pork and veal counterparts outside of Austria, perhaps because it is both cheaper and lighter caloriewise.
- To peel tomatoes, cut a cross through the skin of the base of the tomato and immerse in boiling water for 30 seconds. Rinse in cold water and the skin will come off easily.
chicken is so ugly before it is cooked and then it looks beautiful!