Sizzling schnitzel

GRAHAM HAWKES
Last updated 09:31 27/09/2012
Schnitzel
ROBYN EDIE/Fairfax NZ

Mushroom and cheese-filled schnitzel.

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Our babysitting duties have changed over recent times with a canine addition to middle son's household.

With our household being dog-less for the past few years we often welcome youngest son's family mutt Bella, a gorgeous-natured golden lab. We are now welcoming a king charles pup called Ruby (yes, she is ruby in colour) who is almost identical to Bonnie, a king charles the lads pampered during their growing-up years.

Memories have been jolted since the arrival of Ruby, no more so than at mealtimes. I recall commenting in this forum years ago about the “dog meat sammies” we enjoyed back then.

The term “dog meat” comes from the use of thin slices of beef (schnitzel) being part of Bonnie's staple diet. We would also enjoy the thin slices of beef. The non-crumbed schnitzel would be quickly grilled and served on top of an open cheese and mustard toasted sandwich topped with a salad then the steak, producing a steak sandwich.

As this week is Money Week looking at how to best budget for your meal requirements I realised the thinly sliced beef is a great base for an economical meal. It is a cut that can be utilised in many ways when sliced from an aged quality mark thick flank or topside. It can be used in a variety of dishes such as escalopes (quickly cooked small pieces of schnitzel finished in a creamy mushroom sauce), beef olives, cut up for stir fries and served Asian style, threaded on to bamboo skewers and served as sautes, cut into strips and cooked as stroganoff or filled and served as we shall try today.

MUSHROOM AND CHEESE FILLED SCHNITZELS (makes 4 portions)

210g tin sliced mushrooms in sauce

150g grated tasty cheese (if you wish to tart the dish up replace the tasty cheese with 150g of blue vein cheese)

tsp mixed herbs

4 slices of schnitzel, uncrumbed and cut from a quality mark beef topside (using topside the schnitzel will fold and form a neat oblong shape.)

2 free range egg

1 Tbsp milk

cup seasoned flour

2 cups panko crumbs (white Japanese breadcrumbs)

1 Tbsp olive oil

1 Tbsp butter

Method: Mix the sliced mushrooms, cheese and mixed herbs in a bowl and set aside.

Place the thin slices of beef topside on a clean board and spread equal portions of the mixture over half of the meat, leaving a 1cm section clear around the edge.

Fold the meat over to create a pocket and place in the freezer for 30-40 minutes to set.

Beat the milk and egg together. Place the flour in a flat dish, place the breadcrumbs in another flat dish.

Pass the filled schnitzels firstly through the flour, then the egg mixture and finally cover with the breadcrumbs.

Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil and 1 Tbsp butter in a heavy-based pan and bring to almost smoking. Cook the four crumbed schnitzels until golden brown on one side then carefully turn and continue cooking on the other side.

Once cooked place on absorbent paper for 2 minutes to drain then serve alongside your favourite potatoes and vegetables.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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