Oktoberfest. The annual German event celebrating the Autumn tapping of the previous Spring’s märzen beer brew. Many images come to mind when one thinks of Oktoberfest; beer is usually the first on any list. For me, I love the sight of little girls in dirndl dresses, and grown men in short-pant lederhosen. And as a good German girl myself, married to a proud Bavarian, the bright blue diamond flag of Bavaria is the trademark I recognize most.
While Munich hosts THE Oktoberfest for the planet, many communities throughout Germany and more, host their own version of the fall festivities. While no other can be quite like the one in the Bavarian capital, its easy to enjoy the celebrations publicly or privately.
Beer, yes real Munich märzen beer, is the foundation for any individual’s homage to Oktoberfest. But food also plays a large role. Food musts include giant Pretzels, white sausage (Weisswurst) and lots of sweet, grainy mustard. A great addition to any Oktoberfest menu should include piles of chicken schnitzel.
Hähnchenschnitzel (Chicken Cutlets)
Special Tools: Mallet, Large Frying Pan
Time Needed: 20 minutes
- 1 pound Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts or Tenderloins
- 1/4 cup Flour
- 1 egg
- 1 cup Panko Breadcrumbs
- 1 teaspoon Fondor (German chicken flavoring, optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon Paprika
- 1/4-1/2 cup Vegetable Oil
- 1 tablespoon Butter
- Salt and Pepper
- Lemon Wedges
Chicken Breasts are the traditional cut used in schnitzel, but I find boneless, skinless Chicken Tenderloins are an easier piece to work with. Trim the fat from the Chicken and place in a large plaster zipper bag (Ziploc). Leave enough spare room in the bag. Then use the mallet (flat-side) to pound the Chicken in flat, even pieces, about 1/4 inch thick.
The Breading Line
What makes schnitzel….schnitzel, is the crispy breadcrumb coating. This similar procedure can easily also be adapted to eggplant parmesan or chicken fried steak. The key is setting up each breading station. Coat or dip the chicken (using a fork or tongs is easiest) in each station. As you move from one station to another, shake off the excess. When you are completed with each piece of Chicken, set it aside on another plate.
Heat the large pan on Medium-High. Add Oil and Butter and heat for 1-2 minutes.
Add the breaded Chicken carefully to the hot oil. Make sure the chicken is evenly spaced in one layer.
When the edges of the chicken begin to brown, carefully turn the chicken over. This should take 3-4 minutes for each side.
When the chicken has finished, place on paper towels to absorb the excess oil. Serve hot and garnish with lemon wedges. The acid from the lemon cuts the buttery flavor of the breading.
Great Bavarian Chicken Schnitzel will definitely up-your-game for a personal Oktoberfest celebration. Plus, its pretty good the rest of the year with some French Fries or homemade Spaetzle.
As for the other versions of Schnitzel, this recipe is easily adaptable to classic Wiener Schnitzel (Vienna style made with Veal cutlet) or the common Schweine Schnitzel (made with Pork Loin or Chops).
I am going to make these! I lived in Germany for 3 years growing up and I loved it there. Thank you for bring up some great memories!
PS I found you through the #TDCLBlogtober14 group!
Thanks so much for checking me out. Please let me know if there are any other German recipes you are looking for?