A crisp, golden brown exterior around a thin, tender slab of veal – that’s wiener schnitzel perfection and I found it at Plachuttas Gasthause zur Oper in Vienna.
My European foodcation would not be complete without trying this Viennese classic.
The dish dates from the mid-19th century and the Austrians are generous enough to acknowledge that it may have originated in northern Italy as the costoletta alla milanese – a similar coated, but thicker veal cutlet.
We have the famous Austrian field marshal Count Joseph Radetzky, to thank for bringing the recipe back to Vienna from the Italian territories under the Habsburg rule. His aide-de-camp added a side note to a report on the situation in Lombardy about a ‘deliciously breaded veal cutlet’. It was enough to generate interest from the Emperor who personally requested the recipe on Radetzky’s return.
There’s definitely skill involved in getting the coating just right. I’ve had mixed results – sometimes it seems that there’s just no ‘stick’. Have a try with this recipe which is authentically Viennese. Any tips on how to ensure the coating really sticks will be gratefully accepted.
Here’s the recipe –
600g trimmed veal (silverside or topside)
vegetable oil or clarified butter
1. Beat the eggs with a fork
2. Gently pound the schnitzel
3. Season each side of the meat with salt
4. Lay the schnitzel in the flour and over both sides
5. Coat with the beaten eggs on both sides
6. Coat with the breadcrumbs on both sides pressing lightly
7. Fry in hot oil for 3-5 minutes till brown and drain.
8. Garnish with lemon and serve.
It’s not hard to find wiener (Viennese) schnitzel on the menu in Vienna but you will find the schnitzel at PlachuttasGasthaus zur Opera hard to beat.
Disclaimer: Ed+bK was a guest of the Vienna Tourism Board and stayed at The GuestHouse Vienna.