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Pork works well for schnitzel

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    Pork schnitzel with cucumber salad. Schnitzels are often made with veal or chicken, but pork is a great alternative. Pounding out the cutlets makes them even tenderer and thinner, so they cook up quickly, perfect for a weeknight meal.

Schnitzels are often made with veal or chicken, but pork is a great alternative. Pounding out the cutlets makes them even thinner and more tender, so they cook up quickly, perfect for a weeknight meal. And there’s that irresistible crunch from the panko breadcrumb coating. This is one of those heartening dishes that’s popular with both kids and adults.

The tangy, quickly pickled cucumbers and onions make a great counterpoint to the lightly fried pork cutlets. It’s important to remove seeds from the cucumber — this gives the salad a nicer texture, without the slimy consistency of the seeds, and helps reduce water in the salad. As for the dill, you could definitely use dried instead of fresh.

A little tip: Double the cucumber salad next time you are serving a bagel and smoked salmon spread — it’s a great side for a brunch of any sort, especially as a foil to smoked fish.

PORK SCHNITZEL

  • 4 1/2-inch (4-ounce) thick boneless pork chops
  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup panko
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 teaspoons finely minced fresh thyme
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons olive oil

Place each pork chop between two pieces of plastic wrap and use rolling pin (or bottle of wine) to gently pound pork chops until they are an even thickness, between 1/4- and 1/3-inch thick.

Place flour in shallow bowl, milk in another shallow bowl and panko in third shallow bowl. Season flour and milk lightly with salt and pepper. Stir thyme into the panko.

Season pork lightly with salt and pepper, then dip each piece into flour, shaking off any excess, next into milk, then into panko, pressing so that the crumbs adhere to the pork. Place breaded pork on plate or wire rack.

In large pan, heat 2 tablespoons of oil until hot. Cook pork about 3 minutes on each side until golden brown and just cooked through; you will probably need to do this in at least two batches, adding more oil as needed.

When pork is cooked, place it briefly on a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Serve with the Quick Pickley Cucumber Salad. Serves 2 to 4.

Approximate nutritional information, per serving: 362 calories, 22 g fat, 6 g saturated fat, 68 mg cholesterol, 596 mg sodium, 14 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 1 g sugar, 26 g protein.


QUICK PICKLEY CUCUMBER SALAD

  • 1 cucumber, peeled if desired
  • 1/2 red onion, very thinly sliced
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dried dill
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Slice cucumber in half lengthwise, use a teaspoon to scoop out seeds, and slice into thin half-moons.

Place cucumber slices and onion in colander and toss with salt. Let sit for 10 minutes, then rinse in very cold water. Using your hands, squeeze vegetables to remove as much water as possible. Then place in clean dishtowel, roll up, and twist and squeeze to remove more water.

In a serving bowl, combine vinegar, sugar, dill and pepper. Add cucumber and onion and toss to combine. Serves 2 to 4.

Approximate nutritional information, per serving: 29 calories, no fat or cholesterol, 481 mg sodium, 7 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 3 g sugar, 2 g protein.

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