The Schnitzel is a German Classic, traditionally made with either Pork or Veal, but is equally good with an array of Vegetables. This version with Cauliflower is great in the summer months. You’ll only get about 2 Schnitzels out of a small Cauliflower, because any florets not directly attached to the stem will fall away. However, the rest of the florets can be saved and used for another dish like Cauliflower Puree, or in a Thai Curry.
1 Small Cauliflower
Salt and Pepper
Butter and a Lemon Wedge (Optional)
Bring a medium sized saucepan with Water to the boil.
Meanwhile carefully remove the leaves from the Cauliflower, and chop the lower woody part of the stem off. Using the stem as the middle point, slice the outer florets to the left and right of it away, and then slice through the middle of the stem to create two thick slices about 2 cm thick. The stem is what holds the florets together so that we have a slice of Cauliflower.
Once the Water is boiling add enough Salt so that you can taste the Salt in the Water. It shouldn’t be like Seawater but you should be able to taste a slight salty flavour. Put the slices of Cauliflower into the boiling Water, reduce the heat so that the Water is just slightly simmering and blanch the slices for about 4 – 5 minutes. It’s important that the stem has started to soften, but that the Cauliflower is still firm, test at regular intervals using a knife or skewer. Remove the Cauliflower slices and place in a sieve and rinse under cold running Water. This will stop them from cooking further.
Take 3 deep plates and prepare one with Flour, one with an Egg and one with some Breadcrumbs. Beat the Egg slightly and then season it well with Salt and Pepper. You could also add Chili Powder or Paprika to the Egg if you would like. Take the slices of Cauliflower, and season on both sides with Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper. Take the first slice and place it in the Flour, making sure it is covered on all sides, tap it slightly, shaking off any excess Flour, and then put it in the Egg. Make sure the slice is completely covered in Egg, and then let the excess drip off before placing the slice in the Breadcrumbs. Pat the Breadcrumbs firmly onto the slice and put to one side. Repeat the breading with the second slice.
In a medium frying pan, put enough Sunflower Oil in so that the Schnitzel can ‘swim’ in it. Heat up the Oil on a medium heat. The Oil should be hot when the Schnitzel go in, but not smoking. Test by putting a few Breadcrumbs into the Oil, if they sizzle, the Oil is hot enough. Carefully place the Schnitzel into the Oil. Very quickly the first side will be a golden brown colour, turn immediately to fry the other side. Once both sides are golden brown, remove the Schnitzel onto a piece of Kitchen Towel. Drain the Oil into a bowl through a sieve, it can be used again for frying as long as it has not turned brown. Just place the used Oil into a screw top jar once it has cooled. Use it up within a couple of months. To add a little extra flavour to the Schnitzel take the empty hot frying pan, add a good tablespoon of Butter and allow it to froth up with the excess heat. Take the frothy buttery bubbles and spoon over the golden Schnitzel. Serve immediately with the Tomato Salsa, or with a slice of Lemon.
Tomato and Marjoram Salsa
This recipe for Salsa is enough for 6, but keeps really well for a few days in the fridge. It can also be served on toasted Bread drizzled with Olive Oil for Bruschetta, as part of a big green Salad, or warmed slightly and mixed under Pasta. If you can get a variety of Tomatoes, mix them up for a wonderful aroma, but otherwise the classic variety we all know works fine here.
6 medium large Tomatoes
1 small Red Onion
1 small Clove Garlic
1 Tbsp finely chopped Marjoram
2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
1 1/2 Tsp Salt
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
Crushed Chili, optional
Wash the Tomatoes, and chop them into 1/2 cm cubes. Place the chopped Tomatoes into a Sieve over a bowl to allow the excess fluid to drain from them.
Finely peel and chop the Onion and Garlic.
In a clean bowl add the Tomatoes and all the other ingredients together and mix well. Check for seasoning and add Chili if desired. You can serve the Salsa straight away but I find it’s better if left for a few hours to let the flavours infuse.
Do let me know your thoughts and questions to this recipe if you have any in the comments below!