When you think of meat in Argentina most likely the first thing that comes to mind is parillas and asados. Which is for very good reason because it’s done great and it’s a part of the culture. When you think of places in the world known for meat it’s a battle between American BBQ and Argentine asados, both very different but a part of the culture none the less. But another common preparation of meat shared by most of the world also has a special place in the cuisine of Argentina.
So what is a Milanesa?
Milanesa simply put, is a schnitzel or chicken fried steak. Sure the basic preparation of the milanesa may be similar to places around the world but the accompaniments it can be served with around South America offer an unique change from the chicken fried steak and sausage gravy you would find in American diners.
INGREDIENTS: serves 6 ppl
DIRECTIONS: While a squeeze of lemon is sometimes enough to accompany a milanesa, this recipe takes it one step further. A thin coating of tomato sauce over the crispy crust, melty cheese and a sprinkling of oregano lends an Italian flavor to the dish for a tasty twist on a classic.
Pound the cutlets to just under 1/4-inch (remember to look for steaks with little fat and no sinew, which makes the milanesa curl up as you cook it). Whisk together the eggs, parsley, milk and garlic. Add salt and pepper to taste. Leave the cutlets soaking for 30 minutes to one hour in the fridge. The more time the better. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly cover a baking tray with oil and heat it up in the oven. Spread the breadcrumbs out in a shallow bowl and one by one place the cutlets into the crumbs, turning and pressing firmly until they are well covered. Add the milanesas and cook for about 5 minutes, or until the bottom is golden brown. Turn over the milanesas and spread on a layer of tomato sauce, a piece of ham, if using, and three pieces of cheese. Sprinkle with oregano. By the time the cheese has melted the bottom should be nicely browned, 3 to 5 minutes more. For best results, use the broiler for half of the suggested cooking time in this step to melt the cheese.