Milanesa Mama

I live in a very large apartment complex, it isn't exactly one building it more like a lot of little building, this is great because I get light in from all sides but it also means so does everyone else. And since all of their windows face all of my mine, I can honestly tell you that the most popular dinner item here in this building is the milanesa. The smell of these little wonders wafts up into my kitchen everyday- and never, never ever, do I mind.

A milanesa is a nice long and flat piece of either chicken breast or beef, or sometimes veal, which has been sliced quite thin and then breaded. They are quick and easy and delicious, so lots of family make large batches of them. All pre-breaded you can stick them in the freezer for a quick meal during the week (which is exactly what my soon-to-be-mother-in-law is doing in this picture).

The milanesa is a very common dish in Latin America, though especially so in Argentina. The name comes from cotoletta alla milanese a dish from Milan, Italy, which makes sense- as most of Argentina is made up of Italian immigrants, and the accent here is, at least in my highly linguistic mind, essentially Spanish spoken Italian-style (don't tell on me and by simplified little view).

You can eat milanesas with vinegar or lemon, I like mine with a nice mustard (my favorite mustard being country-style from Maille). And if you get bored of just a milanesa next to your fries or mash you can always try:

Milanesa Napolitana- A milanesa covered with a little tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese and baked in the oven, as strange as it may sound is incredibly good. Occasionally this also comes with ham nestled in between the milanesa and the sauce. The name is also a bit of a language oddity, since "Milanesa" means from Milan and "Napolitana" means from Naples, if you needed a little more language trivia for your next party.

Milanesa a Caballo- A milanesa with two fried eggs on top (fried in a very hot pan and only on one side mind you, the egg that is).

or perhaps you might rather a nice

Milanesa Sandwich- A milanesa between two slices of french bread, lettuce, tomato and mayonnaise.


To Make Milanesas:

Thinly sliced chicken breasts
bread crumbs
oregano (maybe a teaspoon)
parsley (maybe a teaspoon)
salt
pepper
1-2 eggs depending on how much you are making

Mix the crumbs, spices and eggs together in a large bowl and transfer to a tray (a pizza pan works well, or just a deep plate). Take your chicken breast and coat it evenly in the crumbs pressing it down into your bready-mix. One at a time, fry in a shallow pan of oil until golden brown on both sides and cooked all the way through (If you would like a healthier version you can also cook them in the oven).

Serve with homemade fries or mashed potatoes for a typical Argentine meal (I promise you will find it at every restaurant you go to), or with a nice salad.

For more info on Argentine Cuisine check out Answers.com, they have a wonderful little article.

2 comments:

The UNvirgin Mary said...

This is also a very popular dish in other parts of the world. In fact, you may also know it as "wiener schnitzel". Schnitzel is the pounded, thin meat breaded and fried just the way you describe it. And the "wiener" part means that its from Vienna (or in German, Wien). In Japan, the same thing is called katsu. Tonkatsu means its made with pork, Torikatsu is with chicken etc. Interesting how many different places this dish has traveled. I wonder where it came from originally? It is quite delicious, I must agree! Oh, and big news break: I think Im back on pork now! It just makes life so much easier.... and my hot dog and bacon cravings were getting near impossible to resist!

Thanks for the food updates! Though, Id also like to read about what goes on in the rest of your life outside the kitchen..... (update your other blog!) luv ya hun!

Katy said...

I think that a lot of cultures have some thing like this, though they have slight variations. You would never add in basil for example or some chili pepper to a milanesa, it just wouldnt be right (at least according to Santi)