Breaded Veal Cutlet (costoletta alla milanese) - Lombardia, Secondo (Main Course Recipe on Food52 (2024)


  • Serves 4

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Author Notes

Costoletta alla milanese is a favourite dish the world over and many European nations claim to have invented the dish, particularly Austria. In other countries it is sometimes called schnitzel and can be made with chicken breast, turkey breast or pork loin. All are fine substitutions but veal has a mild flavour, tender texture and remains juicy.
Children and adults love this dish. In Milano it is made with veal cutlet which can either have the bone or not and be left 3 cm thick or thinly pounded. In Italy it is most classically paired with risotto alla milanese, roast or fried potatoes or salad. —woo wei-duan

What You'll Need

  • 800 gramsmilk-fed veal chops, bone in with loin attached, washed, dried, and sliced the thickness of the bone, should give you 4 chops
  • 2 cupsmilk (optional)
  • 1 egg, beaten and unseasoned
  • 1.5 cupsgood stale, white bread ground into big breadcrumbs (if not quite stale enough, you can toast on a low temperature to dry out)
  • 175 gramsbutter, unsalted or olive oil depending on your preference
  • sea salt
  • 2 lemons, cut into wedges
  1. Take the veal chops, cut away any fat or gristle and discard. Place the chop between two sheets of wax paper, butcher paper, or plastic wrap and pound with a meat mallet until the meat is an even size of 4 mm and there are no holes.
  2. Soak the chops in milk for an hour before cooking to soften the meat (this is optional). Drain the milk and dry off the chops.
  3. Preheat the oven to 100 C. Place the beaten egg on a plate or low lipped flat bowl. In a separate plate place the breadcrumbs.
  4. Drain the milk away and dry the veal chops. Do not season the meat.
  5. In a frying pan over low heat, melt the butter.
  6. When completely melted, holding the chops by the bone, dip the meat into the beaten egg ensuring that it is coated.
  7. Turn the chop over to coat the other side with egg.
  8. Then dip the meat into the breadcrumbs.
  9. Use your flattened hand to push the breadcrumbs into the meat to ensure that they stick and do not come loose in the butter and burn.
  10. Turn over the chop to coat the other side with breadcrumbs.
  11. Use your flattened hand to push the breadcrumbs into the other side of the meat to ensure that they stick and do not come loose in the butter and burn.
  12. Put one chop into the butter and allow to cook slowly for 5 minutes.
  13. Turn over and cook for 5 minutes on low on the other side. Turn the heat up to medium and fry for 1 to 2 minutes each side so that the coating is golden and crisp. It should not be blackened and you should not allow your butter to burn.
  14. Line a baking dish with kitchen paper and put the chop into the dish, sprinkle with sea salt, and place in the oven while you cook your next chop.
  15. Do not layer the chops or the crust will go soggy. Repeat the procedure until all the chops are done. Serve immediately with lemon wedges to squeeze over.
  16. Note: Leftovers are excellent placed between nice bread with mayonnaise, pressed, and grilled. Once hot, open up and add salad leaves and serve.
  17. Note: Substitute olive oil for butter for dairy-free.

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Breaded Veal Cutlet (costoletta alla milanese) - Lombardia, Secondo (Main Course Recipe on Food52 (2024)


What is cotoletta made of? ›

A tender veal cutlet coated in crunchy breadcrumbs fried in butter, Cotoletta alla Milanese is one of the signature dishes of Milan, the style and design capital of Italy. Also referred to as Veal Milanese, you may already know a certain version of this already – and also how irresistible it can be!

What is veal milanese made of? ›

It is traditionally prepared with a veal rib chop or sirloin bone-in and made into a breaded cutlet, fried in butter. Due to its shape, it is often called oreggia d'elefant in Milanese or orecchia d'elefante in Italian, meaning 'elephant's ear'.

Does soaking veal in milk make it tender? ›

Soak the chops in milk for an hour before cooking to soften the meat (this is optional).

Which method of cooking is most commonly used for veal cutlets? ›

Tender cuts including leg cutlets, veal patties, and rib or loin chops can be prepared by dry heating methods such as roasting, broiling, pan broiling, grilling or stir frying. Moist heat methods such as braising or simmering with a liquid can also be used with these cuts.

What's the difference between schnitzel and cotoletta? ›

The cotoletta milanese is prepared only with veal loin, while the Viennese schnitzel (the so-called Wiener Schnitzel) is prepared with a different cut of veal or pork. The Cotoletta Milanese is served thick, while the Viennese one is thin. The Cotoletta Milanese is fried in butter and the Viennese cutlet in lard.

What's the difference between Milanese and schnitzel? ›

The primary difference between the Viennese Schnitzel of Austria and the Cotoletta alla Milanese or Veal Milanese of Italy is the cut of meat. Both are traditionally made from calf and the Milanese comes from the loin with the bone-in, while the schnitzel is without bone and comes from the flank or rump.

Why is veal so tasty? ›

But how does the meat taste different? Well, veal is slightly more tender than beef, due to the muscles not being worked for as long as the muscles of beef and it has a much more delicate flavour. Veal is actually easier for our bodies to digest than beef is because of how much more tender the meat is.

Why do Italians eat veal? ›

Veal originated in ancient European times and became popular with the Romans, Austrians, and the French. The tender meat and lack of fat made this meat a delicacy around Europe. Veal is usually priced higher as compared to the standard cuts of meat.

What animal is veal? ›

Veal is the meat from a calf or young beef animal. A veal calf is raised until about 16 to 18 weeks of age, weighing up to 450 pounds. Male dairy calves are used in the veal industry.

Why is my veal so tough? ›

How Do I Keep Veal From Getting Tough? Veal is a lean type of meat, so it can easily become chewy and tough if overcooked. Make sure to only fry the cutlets until golden and crispy on each side.

What does milk do to steak? ›

The calcium-rich properties of milk react with enzymes in the meat to gently soften the proteins. Whole milk (not reduced fat), buttermilk, and yogurt all get the job done – with a special nod to buttermilk and yogurt for their optimal tenderizing acidity levels.

How do you cook veal so it's not tough? ›

When sautéing, pan-frying or stir-frying cutlets, use medium-high heat to avoid overcooking. Stewed or braised veal should be browned slowly to let the flavor develop. Lightly cover to retain steam and simmer gently over very low heat. To ensure your veal is tender, juicy and flavorful, cook at 160º.

How do you make veal taste better? ›

Season the meat with herbs, pepper, and salt to your desired taste, and place it in a roasting pan. If you are cooking a rack of veal, keep your meat moist by coating it with olive oil. You may also try out bacon, duck fat, or butter as an alternative to olive oil for a veal roast.

What does il cotoletta mean? ›

Cotoletta (Italian: [kotoˈletta]) is an Italian form of breaded cutlet made from veal. The dish originated in France as the côtelette de veau frite, and was created by the chef Joseph Menon in 1735. Côtelette means 'little rib' in French, referring to the rib that remains attached to the meat during and after cooking.

What is cotoletta parmigiana? ›

A similar veal dish is known in Italian as cotoletta alla bolognese, which excludes tomato sauce but includes melted Parmesan cheese and prosciutto. Costoletta alla parmigiana is another similar veal dish, but in Italy it is generally served without sauce or cheese.

Is veal cutlet beef or pork? ›

Veal is just beef that's been processed before maturity—just like lamb is young sheep. It's very tender, because the animal's muscles are underdeveloped. (Although crating the calves contributes to tender meat, merely processing them before they grow up and work their muscles also contributes to unctuous meat.)

What is breaded veal made of? ›

Breading and pan-frying veal cutlets is a classic and delicious way of preparing veal. The result is perfectly coated, browned, and tender veal cutlets that are easily made with a simple three-step process: The veal is dipped into flour, then egg, and finally breadcrumbs, assuring a crispy coating.

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